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Powergen Challenge Cup Semi Review
St Helens 50 (Wilkin 2, Talau 2, Long, Anderson, Lyon, Gardner, Wellens tries; Lyon 7 goals) def. Hull K.R. 0. Att: 12,868 played at Galpharm Stadium Huddersfield.
St Helens easily powered their way into the Powergen Challenge Cup final by thrashing and shutting out National League leaders Hull K.R.
In one of the most imbalanced semi-final?s for years, the engage Super League leaders opened up a 24-0 lead at the break, with tries from Sean Long, Vinnie Anderson and a brace for ex-Rovers star John Wilkin. Jamie Lyon converted all the tries.
In the second half Saints continued to dominate the game and added five further tries from Ade Gardner, Paul Wellens, two for Willie Talua and Lyon who also added three conversations.
Rovers went close to scoring on three occasions, all through Tommy Gallagher, but their cause was not helped by losing Jason Netherton and James Webster with facial injuries and Gareth Morton to a leg injury.
This win ensured St Helens' fourth Cup final appearance in six years and Hull K.R. can now concentrate in getting promotion to Super League.
Huddersfield Giants 30 (Nero 2, Donlan 2, De Vere tries; De Vere 5 goals) def. Leeds Rhinos 12 (Poching, Donald tries; Sinfield 2 goals). Att: 12,574 played at Grattan Stadium Bradford.
Huddersfield Giants stunned the Leeds Rhinos as they reached their first Challenge Cup Final for 44 years.
It was firm favourites Leeds, who took the lead when Scott Donald scored in the corner, but from then on, the Giants took control and they built up a 12-6 lead with tries from Chris Nero and Stuart Donlan. Leeds did square the game up just before the break with a Willie Poching score but this was as good as it got for the Rhinos.
The second half belonged to Huddersfield as they shut out a below par Leeds team. Further tries from Donlan and Nero stretched the lead to 24-12 and the icing on the cake was a last minute score for Michael De Vere, who also kicked five goals.
At the end of the day the Giants, lead brilliantly by man of the match Brad Drew, had the more desire and thoroughly deserved their victory.