Rugby league: Edwards eclipses Goulding

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The Independent Online
LONDON BRONCOS kept their slender Super League play-off hopes alive with a convincing 20-8 victory over Huddersfield yesterday. The Giants boast just two victories all season and, with driving rain making handling difficult, never stood a chance of improving that dismal record.

Shaun Edwards was the power behind Broncos' dominance and the veteran certainly seemed inspired by the opportunity to renew his well-documented rivalry with his former Wigan team-mate Bobbie Goulding.

Edwards' experience and deft kicking enabled Broncos to cross the try- line three times in the first 20 minutes, effectively breaking the spirits of the visitors before the game had gained momentum.

First, his high kick was chased down by the former Harlequins centre Tulsen Tollett. Then in a carbon copy move he set up Luke Goodwin for his first try three minutes later.

It was not until the 20th minute that the Giants finally reached the half-way line and put pressure on the Broncos' defence. However, moments later, Edwards' precision kicking was neatly gathered by the Australian forward Shane Millard, who extended the hosts' lead.

Huddersfield did make some brave attempts to haul themselves back into the game, with Dave King breaking through after a frantic spell of defending by London.

However, normal service was soon resumed after the break when Goodwin was set up for his second by the hard-running Bart Williams.

The Giants centre James Bunyan underlined his promise at only 20 years of age by grabbing the visitors' second try but even then there was little joy for Huddersfield. The Broncos sealed the win with a late Edwards penalty but they may rue their inability to finish off their lacklustre visitors properly.

Paul Davidson helped St Helens move two points closer to a top-five finish as they notched up a 20-6 victory to deal Hull's play-off hopes a severe blow.

Davidson scored a brace of tries in the opening 18 minutes to give Saints a lead they never relinquished en route to their fourth victory in a row.

The heavy rain and strong wind made for difficult playing conditions but the visitors coped far better than Hull, whose four Saints old boys never looked like putting one over their former team.

The Knowsley Road club, who triumphed despite the absence of the injured Tommy Martyn and Damien Smith, have won every match since coach Shaun McRae was told his contract would not be renewed for next season.

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