Huddersfield 50 Hull Kingston Rovers 16: Local boy Lawrence punishes Rovers for lacklustre effort

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Huddersfield ended a run of six Super League games without a win and reversed last week's Challenge Cup result by taking full advantage of an error-ridden Rovers performance.

A relieved Jon Sharp paid tribute to the transformation achieved by a squad containing 14 English players among whom the local teenagers, Michael Lawrence and Leroy Cudjoe, stood out.

"He is going to be a fantastic player if the gods smile on him and he stays injury free," he said of Lawrence and his two tries.

He will face sterner opposition than Rovers, however, before he gets much further into his career. "We lacked effort today and that's really hard to stomach," said their coach, Justin Morgan. "I'm very disappointed and embarrassed."

Rovers took an early lead thanks to the vision of Paul Cooke who turned the ball back inside to put Scott Murrell through a gap big enough to accommodate a North Sea ferry.

Where they went wrong was by immediately inviting Huddersfield back into the match, Clint Newton's fumble being punished by Lawrence's incisive run and pass to Martin Aspinwall who went over in the corner.

There was suddenly a new confidence about the Giants, with Luke Robinson linking with Kevin Brown and Cudjoe coming into the line. That created the overlap for Shane Elford, whose try gave Huddersfield the lead they were never to look like losing.

Rovers' discipline was as bad as their handling and a couple of soft penalties moved the Giants upfield for Robinson to dart over from dummy-half, Chris Thorman marking his return to the side by kicking the first of his conversions.

The Robins were hoping that another isolated moment of quality might bring them back into contention before half-time. Instead a long pass from Cooke was picked off by Paul Whatuira and the ball went the length and width of the pitch for Lawrence to score Huddersfield's fourth try.

To make matters worse, Rovers put more pressure on themselves when Cooke knocked on from the kick-off at the start of the second half. Rovers were punished when John Skandalis went over from close range.

The difference between the two sides was summed up when Cooke's chip was squandered by Newton losing the ball in the tackle and Huddersfield went straight to the other end for Whatuira and Elford to create a first senior try for Cudjoe.

Huddersfield were looking like world beaters by the time Whatuira went in for a well-earned try from Ryan Hudson's pass.

Rhys Lovegrove got one back for the Robins but Andy Raleigh took the Giants past the 40-point mark before Peter Fox chased Cooke's kick to touch down.

Rovers finished the game in appropriate disarray, with Ben Cockayne, already on report for a dangerous tackle, sin-binned for striking and Lawrence going in for his second.

Huddersfield: Cudjoe, Aspinwall, Lawrence, Whatuira, Elford, Brown, Robinson, Jackson, Hudson, Skandalis, Jones, Raleigh, Snitch. Substitutes used: Thorman, Crabtree, Griffin, Kirmond.

Hull KR: Briscoe, Fox, Walker, Webster, Fitzhenry, Cooke, Murrell, Vella, Fisher, Mills, Newton, Lovegrove, Chester. Substitutes used: Crossman, Cockayne, Aizue, Netherton.

Referee: I Smith (Oldham).

Comments