Challenge Cup final match report: Huddersfield Giants 16 - 25 Warrington Wolves
Aug 31 2009 by Chris Roberts, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
Giants bitten by Wolves
It could have got worse four minutes later when Matt King touched down in the corner from a Briers’ bomb, but video replays showed he had stolen the ball from Leroy Cudjoe when Riley was also involved in the tackle and the penalty was awarded.
That seemed to be the signal for the tide to turn.
In the 23rd minute it appeared as if great work from Kevin Brown had put David Hodgson over in the corner, but video referee Phil Bentham cruelly ruled Lunt had obstructed former Giants junior Bridge in the build-up to the ‘score’.
Lunt was then held up in the 31st minute before Liam Fulton’s grubber kick in the 36th minute forced a second Warrington drop-out in quick succession, and the Giants pounced.
With Huddersfield now by far the dominant power, the ball was kept alive superbly on the right for Fulton, Jamahl Lolesi and Cudjoe to combine magnificently for Brett Hodgson to finish in the corner.
Hodgson just failed with the touchline conversion, but at 18-10 at the break the Giants were right back in it.
For the Giants to stand a realistic chance of mounting a winning Challenge Cup fightback it was always going to be vital they didn’t concede the opening second-half try.
It looked as if Garreth Carvell had thwarted those plans after seven minutes when he stretched out to score, but the tackle had already been completed.
Unforced errors again proved the Giants’ downfall as they threatened to get on top, and they were eventually punished as the Wolves pounced for a fourth score that appeared to bang the opening nail into the Giants’ coffin.
In the 58th minute, Briers smart kick to the corner forced a drop-out and from the next set Monaghan’s craft and strength provided Vinnie Anderson with the space to race in from 15 metres under the posts for another converted score.
Bridge should have extended the Warrington lead with 64th-minute penalty but missed with the narrowly straightforward kick and only fantastic defence held up King on the tryline.
Five minutes later great hands helped send Paul Whatuira racing away, but with the cover doing its job, he was forced to find the supporting David Hodgson, who was quickly wrapped up and the danger had gone.
The winger was not to be denied with five minutes remaining, however, when another great move gave Hodgson the chance to finish off superbly in the corner.
Giants skipper Brett landed the touchline conversion and at 24-16 there was a slight glimmer of hope.
But from the restart, Huddersfield were unable to register dream back-to-back scores and with a minute remaining Briers sealed the Giants fate with a trademark drop goal to send home the fans in claret and gold bitterly disappointed.
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