Huddersfield's annual mid-summer jitters assumed season-ruining proportions last night. David Hodgson returned to the club he left last year to score two tries, as Hull KR emerged superior in all departments. That was especially true at scrum-half, where Michael Dobson decisively outplayed the England candidate, Danny Brough.
Huddersfield had lost four in a row, Rovers had won five of their last six, and the first try reflected that difference in form, Hodgson strolling over from a scrum-base move. The Giants looked nervy, but Brough settled them down with a pin-point cross-field kick, for which Leroy Cudjoe out-jumped two defenders for the equaliser.
It took a memorable tackle from Luke Robinson to indirectly give the Giants the lead. Robinson, one of the smallest players on the field, clattered into Ryan O'Hara, one of the biggest, with such force that the ball came loose near his own try-line. Eorl Crabtree muscled his way through a defence that could not cope with the extra work.
Dobson tied the scores and Rovers led at half-time, thanks to Kris Welham catching up with Dobson's grubber kick a fraction before the dead-ball line. Huddersfield began the second half in similarly self-destructive mood, Dale Ferguson spilling the ball and Ben Galea finding a gap with an angled run to the try-line. Rovers made it a three-try margin with a Dobson penalty. Another cheap turn-over of possession then gave Hodgson his second try.
Aaron Murphy got one back, but fittingly it was Dobson's second and conversion, bringing up his 1,000 points for Rovers, that made sure of the win, although Murphy claimed his second and Larne Patrick crossed near the end, just before Craig Hall rounded it off.
Huddersfield: Eden; Murphy, Cudjoe, Lawrence, George; Brown, Brough; Crabtree, Moore, Fa'alogo, Gilmour, Ferguson, Lee. Substitutes used: Robinson, Faiumu, Patrick, Chan.
Hull KR: McDonnell; Webster, Horne, Welham, D Hodgson; Hall, Dobson; O'Hara, J Hodgson, Taylor, Mika, Galea, Lovegrove. Substitutes used: Withers, Paea, Murrell, Netherton.
Referee: T Alibert (France).