Hodgson holds nerve to salvage draw for Giants

Huddersfield 16 Hull KR 16
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The Independent Online

Brett Hodgson's touchline penalty after the hooter gave Huddersfield a share of the points in this absorbing battle between play-off candidates. Rovers put an end to a run of five away defeats and strengthened their bid for a play-off place but could not quite hold on for the win.

Huddersfield's coach, Nathan Brown, said he was always confident about Hodgson's accuracy. "His ability to kick under pressure is superb," he said.

Rovers had built up a handy early lead. Scott Murrell created and scored the first try, putting in a low, skidding kick that ricocheted off Luke Robinson to roll through and be touched down.

Almost immediately Leroy Cudjoe fumbled. On the last tackle of their third set following that mistake, Rovers ran the ball, with Clint Newton taking Ben Fisher's pass to go through on the angle, and Michael Dobson kicking a second conversion.

Huddersfield halved the Robins' lead when Kevin Brown produced a clever angled kick for Michael Lawrence to score his first try of the season and for Hodgson to add the goal.

Huddersfield drew level nine minutes after the break with a try that summed up some of the basic virtues of the game. Darrell Griffin charged the ball in and got a quick play-the-ball to Brad Drew, who scampered out of dummy half to drop off a perfect pass for Brown's diagonal run, Hodgson adding the goal and a penalty soon after to put his side ahead for the first time.

The Giants conceded the equalising two points to Dobson's penalty, however, after Graeme Horne had held down Joel Clinton. An offside penalty then saw Dobson put Rovers ahead with seven minutes to go.

Brown, Cudjoe and David Hodgson all went desperately close before Brett Hodgson had the final word after his namesake, David, had been fouled straining for the winning try.

Huddersfield: B.Hodgson; Cudjoe, Lolesi, Lawrence, D Hodgson; Broen, Brough; Mason, Robinson, Griffin, Gilmour, Finnigan, Wild. Substitutes used Patrick, Horne, Faiumu, Drew.

Hull KR Cockayne; Fox, Welham, Ratu, Latus; Murrell, Dobson; Vella, Fisher, Clinton, Newton, Galea, Watts. Substitutes used Wheeldon, Taylor, J.Hodgson, Lovegrove.

Referee P Bentham (Warrington).