Super League Round 16 Review - Magic Weekend

Round 16 of Super League brings us “The Magic Weekend” where all fourteen Super League teams play one round of fixtures on the road. For the second year, all seven games over the weekend will take place at the Etihad Stadium Manchester, the home of Manchester City Football Club.

62,042 fans turned up for the weekend with 30,793 attending the first day and 31,249 on day two.

 

The first game of the weekend saw Catalan Dragons running out convincing winners over London Broncos 46-18.

After the Londoners had all the early possession, it was the Dragons who took the lead and came courtesy of an interception from Scott Dureau, who was making his first appearance of the campaign after have in a tumour removed off his eye in the close season.

A chip over and re-gather from Morgan Escare made it 12-0 before the Broncos hit back with two tries themselves to level things up at 12-12. Chris Bailey took an inside pass from Craig Gower for the first before Michael Witt added the other after going through a gap on the last tackle. Witt converted both scores.

Just as it looked as the teams would go into the interval all square, Jamie O’Callaghan let Dureau high kick bounce and Daryl Millard picked the ball up to stroll over on the halftime hooter to make it 16-12 in the French outfits favour.

Six minutes into the second period a great offload from Brian Larroyer sent Frederic Vaccari in as the Dragons increased their lead. Dureau then added a penalty goal and on sixty minutes, the evergreen Steve Menzies sent Vaccari over for his second.

Zeb Taia then superbly offloaded for Escare to make it a double before the Londoners pulled one back as young fullback Kieran Dixon chipped over and collected the ball to score next to the posts.

In the last ten minutes of the game Taia and Leon Pryce both got over the whitewash with Dureau adding both conversions as Catalan cruised to victory.

 

Game two saw Castleford Tigers gain a big win over closest rivals Wakefield Wildcats 49-24.

The star of the show for the Tigers was England Stand-Off Rangi Chase, who ran the game from start to finish. Hooker Daryl Clark got things underway on three minutes by going over from dummy half.

On 12 minutes, Justin Carney took Chase’s pass and raced away to send Jamie Ellis in for try number 2.Chase then put a kick through which clipped the goal post and Kirk Dixon got on the end of it to make it 16-0.

Another kick, this time a high one, from Chase led to Craig Huby making it 22-0. From the kick-off Wakefield pulled, one back on 27 minutes as new signing from Parramatta Eels Taulima Tautai provided the pass for Dean Collis to score.

Two minutes later Danny Kirmond went straight through the heart of the Castleford defence to make it 22-12. However, the Tigers hit back as once again chase setup Dixon with another high kick and just before the interval Carney powered his way over the line to make it 32-12.

At the start of the second half Collis pulled another one back for the Wildcats after good work by Tim smith but a long pass from Chase setup Dixon who scored his hat-trick in the right hand corner.

Jordan Thompson scored from close range before Dixon got in on the try scoring act again by making it four for the game as Castleford took their advantage up to 48-18.

Chris Anakin scored a Wakefield consolation as the Tigers had the last say with Ellis adding a let drop goal as new Head Coach Darryl Powell claimed his first win since taking over three weeks ago.

 

Up next was the big city derby as Hull FC came from behind to snatch a win at the death 22-16 over Hull KR.

The Black and Whites who took the early lead when a 40-20 from Daniel Holdsworth gave the field position for Richard Whiting to slide over under the posts on three minutes. Holdsworth added a simple conversion.

Ten minutes later, Rovers got on terms as Craig Hall made the break and Michael Dobson got Greg Eden over to level things up.

Rovers continued to dominate the rest of the half as Hull kept on gifting them possession. The pressure eventually told as Dobson’s high bomb to the corner was taken by Hall, who scored out wide. 

Despite all the play, Rovers failed to add to their score, as the lead was 10-6 at half time.

Again, both teams went at each other in the third quarter and it was Hull KR who finally got a breakthrough thanks to a penalty goal from Dobson after Mark O’Meley had been penalised for a high tackle.

On the hour mark, Rovers increased their lead to 16-6 when the ball was fed out wide and Eden brilliant final pass got Alex Brown over in the right hand corner.

However, there would be a twist in the game as FC roared back to snatch victory in the last eight minutes. Tom Lineham squeezed over in the corner for the first score with Holdsworth converting, with help of the post, from the touchline.

Five minutes from time Yeaman stretched out to score, as the game was set up for a Grandstand finish with the teams deadlocked at 16-16.

More controversy then followed when Holdsworth's highball was totally misjudged by Greg Eden and prop Green ran in to ground the ball.

Replays showed that Green appeared to be in an offside position when the ball was played. But Hull FC did not care as they avenged last year’s last minute loss to the same opponents to make it eight win in nine.

 

Bringing the curtain down on day 1 was Warrington Wolves overwhelming St Helens 48-22.

Warrington made their customer fast start as after just two minutes Chris Riley crossed in the left hand corner with Stefan Ratchford adding the touchline conversion.

Three minutes later Ratchford’ high kick was plucked out of the air by Ryan Atkins was the Wolves made it 12-0.

Saints hit back well and scored two tries in eight minutes. First, to score was Ade Gardiner as the ball was quickly moved out wide. The second came courtesy of Warrington losing the ball in their twenty and Nathan Ashe supplied the final pass for Jordan Turner to score.

But, the last thirteen minutes of the first half belonged to the Wolves as they cut St Helens open. Chris Riley made it a double by finishing off a Simon Grix break.

Lee Briers and Trent Waterhouse added the others as the lead ballooned out 30-10 at the break.

Saints made a good response after the resumption and they cut the gap when a Lance Hohaia bomb was collect by Turner for his second try and the gap was down to 30-22 when Hohaia finished off a fine flowing move.

However, as in the first half Warrington finished strongly and added three more tries to ease home. Waterhouse for a double and Grix both got over the line. Then on the final hooter veteran prop Adrian Morley finished of a break to score his first try for over two years as the Wolves ran out easy winners.

 

Day two began with Salford City Reds edging past Widnes Vikings 28-22.

Both teams cancelled each other out, until the 28-minutes when Dean Gaskell intercepted a pass from Jon Clarke and raced 95-meters to open the scoring.

It got even better for the City Reds when Jordan James powered his way over the line. Marc Sneyd added the extras to make it 12-0.  

Needing to score next, Widnes duly delivered as Kevin Brown’s grubber kick was pounced on by Joe Mellor. Jack Owens added the extras to make it 12-6 at the break.

Six minutes into the second period, Mellor made it a two-point ball game as he kicked through to score.  Jodie Broughton then had a try chalked off by the video referee for obstruction.

Salford were not to be denied on 63-minutes as the ball was moved across the line for Martin Gleeson to score. The Vikings had made it 16-16 three minutes later as Mellor completed his hat-trick by running through the City Reds defence.

Theo Fages then scored another one for Salford only for Kevin Brown to hit back for Widnes to make it 22-22 with just over six minutes remaining.

But, it would be Salford’s day as in the 77th minute Stephen Wild got James over for his second as the City Reds clinched the win.

 

Huddersfield Giants were far too strong for Bradford Bulls, triumphing 42-6 in the penultimate game of the weekend. 

The Giants got on their way after ten minutes when Luke Robinson played in Dale Ferguson for the opening try of the game.

Three minutes later Robinson’ high kick was patted back by Leroy Cudjoe into the arms of Scott Grix who just had to touchdown. Danny Brough converted to make it 12-0.

Shaun Lunt made a break from inside his own half and a couple of plays later Larne Patrick raced in as the Giants led 18-0 at half time.

Bradford tried to get into the game but they could not break a strong Huddersfield defence down and Ferguson waltzed through for his second of the match on 54 minutes to make it 24-0.

At last, the Bulls finally broke their duck as kick by Danny Addy was palmed back by Elliott Kear for Jamie Foster to score. Foster then added the goal.

However, Huddersfield upped their tempo and ran away with the game with three tries in the last fifteen minutes. A break by Patrick setup Lunt for the first with Jamie Cording getting Brett Ferres over for the second.

The last score came from Anthony Mullally and with Brough making it seven from seven, the Giants cemented second spot with a comfortable win.

 

In the final game of the weekend, Wigan Warriors claimed a hard-fought win over Leeds Rhinos 20-16. 

Going into the game Wigan were on a ten-match winning run as they looked to inflict a third successive defeat on the champions and it was the Warriors who took the lead as Ian Thornley off-loaded for Sam Tomkins to score his 25th try in his last 11 games.

Kevin Sinfield reduced the arrears with a penalty goal and then he finished off a move by Zak Hardaker to give Leeds an 8-6 lead.

Wigan soon regained the lead as they ran the ball on the last tackle and Tomkins turned provider by getting Pat Richards over, with Richards adding the extras to make it 12-8.

The big winger then added two penalty goals before the Rhinos hit back. Rob Burrow created the space for Kallum Watkins to some how got the ball down with no room to spare in the right hand corner.

The crucial score came on the stroke of half-time when Wigan scrum-half Matty Smith, gathered Sinfield's kick and his quick-thinking got winger Josh Charnley racing away as the Warriors opened up a 20-12 lead.

Leeds defended well and kept Wigan out and it was game on when the ball was moved across the line for Hardaker and Watkins to get Joe Vickery touching down in the corner. Sinfield missed the kick.

The champions thought they had earned at least a share of the spoils when centre Joel Moon broke clear to send Danny McGuire over.

However, the video ruled the try out for Chris Clarkson blocking a defender as Wigan held on for the win which sees’s them remain clear at the top of the table.

 


Pos


Team

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

For

Against

Points

1

Wigan Warriors

16

13

1

2

609

201

27

2

Huddersfield Giants

16

12

0

4

480

288

24

3

Warrington Wolves

16

10

1

5

470

305

21

4

Leeds Rhinos

14

9

1

4

363

232

19

5

Catalan Dragons

16

9

1

6

399

352

19

6

Hull FC

16

8

2

6

374

315

18

7

Bradford Bulls

16

7

2

7

375

385

16

8

St Helens

16

7

1

8

362

350

15

9

Hull KR

16

7

0

9

403

488

14

10

Wakefield Wildcats

15

5

1

9

366

448

11

11

Widnes Vikings

15

5

1

9

359

476

11

12

Castleford Tigers

16

4

1

11

350

511

9

13

Salford City Reds

16

4

1

11

261

543

9

14

London Broncos

16

3

1

12

269

546

7

 

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