The makeshift Huddersfield Giants battled to the end before finally falling to in-form Castleford Tigers in a point-a-thon at The Jungle.
It may have been a better all-round performance than last week’s 36-10 home capitulation at the hands of Salford .
But the Giants were still guilty of the same old failings of not respecting possession and continually handing their opponents a simple way to strike when Huddersfield hopes were at their highest.
Without the likes of the injured Danny Brough , Scott Grix, Shaun Lunt, David Faiumu and Aaron Murphy their task was always going to be tough, but there was a real sense of disappointment that they didn’t make life harder for their hosts.
Although the Giants were under pressure for much of the opening period they could count themselves unlucky to be 16-12 down at half-time after conceding a try on the last play of the half.
Up to that point the visitors had dug deep defensively to hold a slender 12-10 advantage after absorbing an awful lot of pressure.
Huddersfield did start brightly, with several hits rocking the Tigers back and giving them the opportunity to take the lead after five minutes when Chris Bailey plunged over from acting half-back close to the line f or Leroy Cudjoe to add the extras.
But for the rest of the half, it was backs-to-the-wall stuff.
Within four minutes Castleford had hit back for the first time when Marc Sneyd collected a deep Luke Robinson kick and raced through a lethargic Chase to feed Oliver Holmes to finish off.
Leroy Cudjoe relieved the relentless Tigers pressure on the quarter hour by intercepting a Liam Finn pass to race 90m to score under the posts and land the conversion.
However, with the Giants again conceding cheap possession at regular intervals, their hosts twice made them pay.
After conceding a third drop-out of the game after 25 minutes, the position was created for Justin Carney to storm over in the corner for Sneyd to convert.
And he added a second after the half-time hooter had sounded when a ‘bomb’ failed to be defused and Finn collected to score .
The half-time break failed to stop the Huddersfield error drought, with more mistakes giving Adam Milner a simple score close to the line within three minutes of the restart, and with Sneyd converting, Castleford had a two-score lead for the first time.
And three minutes later the gap was even wider when Finn kicked to the corner on the last tackle for Kirk Dixon to touch down.
The Tigers’ third try of the half came in the 53rd minute when Michael Shenton shot through and fed Finn to race over for a fourth converted try to make it 32-12 and it effectively looked as if the game was over as a contest.
Although no-one had told the Giants at that stage as they crossed for their third try in the 57th minute when Joe Wardle finished a sweeping move in the corner and Cudjoe added an excellent touchline conversion before Bailey grabbed a carbon copy second try on the hour mark to reduce the deficit to eight points.
That lead was so nearly cut even more moments later when great play from Jake Connor sent Jodie Broughton racing away, but video plays showed the winger had agonisingly put a foot in touch.
But that brave fightback was brought to an abrupt end when Frankie Mariano showed great strength to touch down under the heaviest of traffic.
Eorl Crabtree followed suit by crashing over in similar fashion with eight minutes remaining and Cudjoe added his fifth goal to cut the gap to eight points.
But Grant Millington put the final nail in the Giants coffin by grabbing his side’s eighth try in the 77th minute.
Click here for more Huddersfield Giants news
Want to read, watch and hear more? You can download the FREE Examiner Apple App here , the FREE Examiner Android App here or you can view the paper as an e-edition on your Apple, Android or Kindle device by clicking here
Want the latest Huddersfield Giants news? Follow our Giants news Twitter here