HUDDERSFIELD Giants bounced back from their bitterly disappointing defeat to St Helens with a demolition job on the outclassed Catalans Dragons.
Coach Nathan Brown’s side were in complete control from start to finish as they moved back up to third in the Super League table.
Nine tries to one underlined their total supremacy, and on the back of such a comfortable night’s work they will be relishing Monday’s trip to struggling Salford City Reds.
While the City Reds were involved in a bruising tussle at Warrington, Brown was able to ‘spell’ all his players at just the right time, ensuring they should be relatively fresh for the next challenge.
It was somewhat cruel on the visitors from France, who were lacking several key players and were unable to adopt the physical approach that has been at the heart of so many of their successes in recent times.
But at the same time, the Giants made the most of facing a weakened side and seemed to relish their evening’s assignment, with Danny Brough producing a man-of-the-match performance in just his second game in the claret and gold.
His kicking game, in particular, was exceptional, and he grabbed two tries to crown a top night.
The Giants went straight onto the attack and were soon in complete control.
Within five minutes they had hit the front and by half-time had cruised into a 26-0 lead.
The impressive David Faiumu was the first to strike on the back of some strong work from the forwards.
Andy Raleigh’s drive to the line made life almost impossible for the Dragons and the Kiwi international was quickly in at acting half-back to dummy his way over for his first try of the season.
Brett Hodgson added the conversion, and the home side had made the perfect start.
It took them six minutes to extend their lead as Brett Hodgson’s short pass was collected at pace by Lee Gilmour to brush aside his marker and power over.
Even at this stage, the Dragons looked a beaten side.
But it was another 12 minutes before try No3 came along.
This time it was Luke Robinson who was the chief provider, kicking through superbly close to the line for Brough to touch down for the first try of his Giants career.
And five minutes later Huddersfield were over once again when Catalans again lost the ball in their own 20 and Kevin Brown took full advantage by sending out a long pass for David Hodgson to race in at the corner.
Such was the dominance of the Yorkshiremen that it was no surprise at all when they crossed for a fifth time.
Brough took the ball to the line before an exquisite kick off the outside of his boot gave Brown the easiest of scores.
Catalans started the second half brightly, forcing their hosts to drop-out twice from under their own posts in the opening moments.
As a result, the Dragons drew first blood in the 49th minute when Dimitri Pelo pounced on a Thomas Bosc grubber to get the touch and William Barthau added the goal.
That, however, immediately stung the Giants back into life and within minutes Brough dabbed the ball ahead for Leroy Cudjoe to collect and race in to score. Normal service had been resumed.
With Huddersfield now back in control, it wasn’t long before the seventh score came along.
Good work from Faiumu and Shaun Lunt close to the line caused chaos in the French’s side’s defence, and when the ball found Brough he stepped on the gas from 15m out to slice through heavy traffic and touch down close to the posts for his second. That came in the 59th minute, and was closely followed by a second for David Hodgson, who slid in superbly at the corner within seconds of the visitors dropPING out.
Brough almost completed his hat trick in the 68th minute when he just failed to collect Brett Hodgson’s kick-through.
But despite forcing Catalans to drop-out again minutes later, it wasn’t until the 78th minute that they grabbed their final try.
Lunt’s break from deep carved the Dragons open and he found the supporting Brett Hodgson to race away and score under the posts before landing his sixth and final goal.Related content