WRAP: 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup Semi Finals


A full wrap of the 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup Semi Finals with AJ Lucantonio

All listed times are BST (UK Local).

RELATED: See the full list of 2024 Betfred Challenge Cup Finals Series Draw and Results.

Hull KR 6 Wigan Warriors 38
Venue: Eco-Power Stadium, Doncaster

Date: Sat, 18th May.   Kickoff: 1:45 PM.   Halftime: Wigan 24-0.   Penalties: Hull KR 8-5.   Referee: Chris Kendall.   Crowd: 11,163.

Hull KR: Evalds, Burgess, Hiku, Opacic, Hall; May, Lewis; Sue, Litten, Whitbread, Hadley, Batchelor, Minchella (C). Int: King, Parcell, Luckley, Tanginoa.
Wigan: Field, Miski, Keighran, Wardle, Marshall; French, Smith; Havard, O'Neill, Thompson, Nsemba, Farrell (C), Ellis. Int: Mago, Leeming, Dupree, Walters.

Hull Kingston Rovers (6)
Tries: Joe Burgess
Goals: Mikey Lewis 1/1

Wigan Warriors (38)
Tries: Jacob Wardle 2, Abbas Miski 2, Harry Smith, Tyler Dupree, Junior Nsemba
Goals: Adam Keighran 3/3, Harry Smith 2/5

The Wigan Warriors were the first team through to the Challenge Cup final with a commanding win over Hull Kingston Rovers in Doncaster.

The Warriors started strong with an early try after three minutes. A well worked set play to the right edge saw Jai Field link up with Jake Wardle, the young centre was able to get on the outside of the Hull KR defence for the opening try.

Just a few minutes later, Wigan's scintillating attack struck once more capitalising on poor last tackle options from Rovers. A perfectly weighted chip kick from Bevan French was caught spectacularly from Abbas Miski and the Lebanese winger was able to contort his body to ground the ball. Matty Smith made amends to make it 10-0.

Rovers had chances to cut into the Wigan lead but fell short at the opportune times. But where Rovers couldn't capitalise, Wigan could and got try number three shortly afterwards. An error from Rovers gave the Warriors prime field position and play quickly swung right. Smith delivered a short ball to Junior Nsemba who crashed across, Smith conversion was yet again waved away.

Miski added a second to put Rovers in survival mode. Wardle's grubber was difficult for Joe Burgess to take and he spilled it cold. Liam Marshall recovered the loose ball and he offloaded it to Miski who ran over the line for his second of the afternoon. Smith's goal-kicking was the only thing holding Wigan back in the first half. From the next set, Kruise Leeming caught Rovers asleep down the short-side to send Marshall away, the winger kicked inside, and it was Smith who collected the crumbs for try number five of the opening half. Smith sacked himself from goal-kicking for Adam Keighran who added the extras to lead 24-0 at half-time.

Rovers started the second half with more intensity, but an incorrect offside call changed momentum to Wigan. They compounded that mistake with another penalty which allowed Keighran to add a penalty goal for 26-0. Rovers got a break with a Pat Mago mistake and capitalised to open the try account for the second half. A cross-field kick wasn't dealt with and some silky skills saw Joe Burgess score, Lewis converted to reduce the gap to 20.

Just when there was hope, Rovers failed to defuse the kickoff and Tyler Dupree crashed across from point blank range to book their trip to Wembley. Tempers flared late in the game with Tom Opacic being sent to the sin-bin for a push to the face and he was joined by fellow Australian Keighran in the sin-bin. Wigan added to their advantage with 15 to go with a great right edge raid. Miski was sent away down the right who kicked in field, Sam Walters recovered and swung a speculator and Wardle added a second to the score-board. With Keighran in the bin, Smith returned to kicking duties and landed it for 38-6. That's where the scoring ended as Wigan advanced to Wembley once more.  

Huddersfield Giants 10 Warrington Wolves 46
Venue: Totally Wicked Stadium, St Helens

Date: Sun, 19th May.   Kickoff: 3:15 PM.   Halftime: Warrington 22-4.   Penalties: Warrington 4-1.   Referee: Liam Moore.   Crowd: 9,253.

Huddersfield: Connor, Swift, Marsters, Naiqama, Wallis; Lolohea, Clune; Wilson, Milner, English, Murchie, Cudjoe, Yates (C). Int: Golding, Rushton, Ikahihifo, Salabio.
Warrington: Dufty, Thewlis, King, Tai, Ashton; Williams (C), Drinkwater; Harrison, Walker, Vaughan, Nicholson, Fitzgibbon, Currie. Int: Philbin, Musgrove, Crowther, Powell.

Huddersfield Giants (10)
Tries: Kevin Naiqama, Adam Swift
Goals: Jake Connor 1/2
Sin Bin: Jake Connor

Warrington Wolves (46)
Tries: Matt Dufty 2, Sam Powell, George Williams, Josh Drinkwater, Danny Walker, Matthew Ashton, Rodrick Tai
Goals: Josh Thewlis 7/10

The Warrington Wolves have booked a Challenge Cup final date with Wigan after a commanding 46-10 victory over the Huddersfield Giants.

Warrington set the tone by opening the scoring after just seven minutes. A shift left saw Matty Ashton find open space, finding two other Wire players before Josh Drinkwater backed up in support to score the opening try. Josh Thewlis converted for an early lead. Ian Watson would've been wanting a restart of proceedings when the advantage was doubled just minutes later. Matt Dufty fooled the right edge defence to break away before linking up with Ashton to cross, Thewlis again converted for a 12-0 lead after just 11 minutes.

The Wire didn't slow down either crossing for try number three before the 20 minute mark. Danny Walker bamboozled the stunned Huddersfield defence from close range and it was 18-0 in the blink of an eye. The Giants finally got some possession and capitalised to stop the bleeding after 25 minutes. Tui Lolohea dug deep into the line to find Esan Marsters, before offloading the ball and some swift hands saw Adam Swift cross in the corner to make it 18-4.

Williams crossed with six to go before half-time to break the Huddersfield spirit. A dummy half dart from Walker saw the ball offloaded to Williams who beat the cover defence from Adam Clune to score a try deep inside their own half for a 22-4 half-time lead.

The Wire turned it on after the break with Dufty adding to his excellent first half, crossing for two tries in the space of five minutes. The first effort saw the fullback collect a short ball from Williams, beat a couple of defenders and slammed it down to make it a four possession game. The second effort saw more interchange of passing before Dufty utilised his amazing speed to get on the outside of the defenders to make it a 30 point advantage.

The Giants managed a consolation effort just after the hour mark when Kevin Naiqama crossed for Huddersfield. Sam Powell had possession taken from him, which allowed Naiqama to pick it up and run away for some consolation points. Two late tries from Powell and Roderick Tai added further salt into the Huddersfield wound as the Wire book their first trip to Wembley since 2019.