HUDDERSFIELD Giants put the disappointment of defeat to Leeds and Bradford firmly behind them by destroying Castleford Tigers in a dazzling 12-try display.
It was only the second time in a Super League game the Giants had scored that many tries in a contest, equalling their August 2005 effort against Leigh Centurions.
And they also equalled their highest margin of victory in the competition, with yesterday’s 52-point gap the same as when Leigh were thrashed 68-16.
But in so many ways this triumph over the Tigers was so much more satisfying.
After the bitterly disappointing scorelines against champions Leeds and Bradford – 30-10 and 38-12 respectively – coach Jon Sharp’s side were desperate to put on a show.
But no-one could surely have predicted that show would have been quite so emphatic.
Within minutes, the Giants had made it crystal clear they were determined to secure a first League win of the campaign.
Only an offside call prevented Shane Elford from opening the scoring after three minutes when he collected a Luke Robinson kick in the corner.
However, six minutes later, they were not to be denied as Keith Mason and John Skandalis combined to send the supporting Robinson over for his third try of the season.
Chris Thorman made no mistake with the first of his eight goals from 12 attempts.
Three minutes later, the home side were over again when Paul Whatuira fed Rod Jensen to squeeze in at the corner, and it was already 12-0.
There was a slight scare after 18 minutes when Castleford reduced the deficit with a Michael Wainwright try, which also resulted in Robinson having to leave the field with a split ear in his bid to prevent it.
But that only strengthened the Giants’ resolve.
Four minutes later Kevin Brown used all his strength to power over from close range, Thorman’s kick made it 18-6 and it was all over bar the shouting.
With confidence growing and their hosts wilting, it soon became a case of how many?
Try No4 came in the 31st minute when a deep break from Shane Elford put the Tigers on the back foot and Brown worked the position for Steve Snitch to score with ease.
And on the stroke of half-time, the lead was up to 28-6 as more good work from Brown eventually created the position for Elford to crash through a defender and squeeze in at the corner.
Any hopes poor Castleford may have had of putting up stronger second-half resistance were dashed with two minutes of the restart – and in spectacular fashion.
A long, high kick was picked up deep inside Jensen’s own half, and the crowd favourite sprinted majestically through a spellbound Castleford defence before feeding Thorman to finish off.
Four minutes later, Whatuira shot through a gap and fed Lolesi to cruise through, and the 40-point barrier had already been reached.
But there was still a lot more to come, with the 49th-minute score a real eye-catcher.
Brown was twice involved in a completely mesmerising move, which was completed when the Giants’ stand-off somehow managed to get the ball out of the tackle to send Whatuira charging over the line.
With Robinson now patched up and back on the field, it wasn’t long before he was back joining in the fun, kicking through delightfully for Lolesi’s second in the 55th minute.
Midway through the half, Peter Lupton crossed after the giants had been penalised three times on their own line for offside, but it wasn’t long before normal service had been resumed.
Great work by George Gatis set up Keith Mason for a rare try in the 67th minute and four minutes later, Eorl Crabtree’s strength and speed paved the way for Robinson to add a second.
And in the closing moments the scrum half turned provider to give Andy Raleigh a walk-in.
It was a great final piece of skill to sum up a superb performance.