Huddersfield Giants 12 (J Broughton, J Wardle tries; D Brough 2 goals)
Leeds Rhinos 12 (S Ward, K Watkins tries; K Sinfield 2 goals)
Huddersfield Giants and Leeds Rhinos played out an enthralling 12-12 draw at the John Smith’s stadium on Friday night.
Possession for the Rhinos in the early stages turned into a try as a good move from left to right saw Sinfield find Stevie Ward, who had the strength to break through a gap for the game’s first try on six minutes, with Sinfield adding the conversion.
Huddersfield thought they had closed the deficit when Jason Chan set up Scott Grix soon after, but after extensive video replays, the try was disallowed.
Huddersfield’s Joe Wardle was then denied twice by the officials within the space of six first-half minutes. First as a result of a forward pass, and then when he had a foot out of play.
The home side finally got on the scoreboard when a fine move saw Broughton go over just after the half hour mark, but Brough missed the resulting conversion attempt.
Brough then missed a 40-metre penalty on the stroke of half time as the visitors somehow retained their slender 6-4 advantage.
Huddersfield, who had won the previous five meetings between the two sides, saw fourth try disallowed, this time for a knock-on, but Brough kicked a penalty to bring the scores level. 6-6 after 53 minutes.
Sinfield’s penalty saw the visitors take an 8-6 lead, before Luke Robinson set up Wardle for an impressive try in the corner to put Huddersfield ahead for the first time on 69 minutes – Brough added the extras.
A matter minutes later, Zak Hardaker produced an outstanding pass for Kallum Watkins to crash over, but Sinfield missed the kick which would have put the visitors ahead again.
A tense finish ensued, with both sides having drop-goal attempts to win it, Sinfield failed twice for Leeds with his second attempt hitting the post, while Danny McGuire was also wide of the mark.
Brough also missed two drop-goal chances for Huddersfield as the West Yorkshire rivals were forced to to settle for a share of the points.
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