Huddersfield Giants 18 - 32 Wigan Warriors (half-time 12-12)

Wigan retained their composure despite having to change in a canteen at the John Smith's Stadium, before storming away from rivals Huddersfield in the second period of their latest Super League meeting. Their victory maintained their pursuit of the top two sides in the table, Leeds and St Helens, and ensured that the fourth-placed Giants are now five points behind them.

Wigan building momentum

After their convincing success over Leeds at last weekend's "Magic Weekend" in Newcastle, the Warriors are perhaps the form side in the Super League.

With only two points now separating themselves from leaders Leeds, they know that any further slip ups by the Rhinos could see them jump into the pole position, should they manage to overturn their current points' difference deficit. Wins on the road at such as top-four chasing Huddersfield are essential to their chances of maintaining the pressure at the summit.

Changing facilities fiasco

There was a minor hiccup to their plans before the game. Due to a power cut in the main stand at Huddersfield's ground, a rapidly arranged alternative for their changing facilities had to be devised. The solution was to make do with a temporary dressing room in a canteen located under the north stand instead.

Rugby league players are hardy souls though and as head coach Shaun Wane eluded to on their club website, when reciting the Wigan mantra "any time, any place, anywhere", it proved to be only a minor inconvenience for the 'Cherry and Whites'.

First-half parity

The Giants provided the first problems on the pitch, as teenager Jared Simpson went over for the opening score to mark his debut in fine style.

Joe Burgess brought the visitors level though, aided by Matty Smith's conversion, stretching his burgeoning try count to 17 for the season.

The game continued to see-saw through the first period as Joe Wardle once again put the home side ahead, only for Liam Farrell to restore parity with a score just before the interval.

The Giants had squandered a golden opportunity to add to their lead before Farrell's score. As it was the 12-12 score-line after forty minutes was probably slightly harsh on them. The match seemed perfectly set up for a close second-half though that could go either way.

Wigan finally move clear

Wigan had a different agenda in mind after the break, with Josh Charnley marking his 150th appearance in their colours by giving them the lead. This time it was the Giants' turn to bring the game back into the balance once more, through Danny Brough's wonderful long-range try after a fumble by Charnley.

It proved to be their last major contribution to the game though, as Wigan moved through the gears thereafter.

Three tries from Farrell, Charnley and John Bateman settled the outcome once and for all.

The final score-line of 32-18 to Wigan was perhaps rather flattering in the final analysis, but they took their chances towards the end to make the game safe. Huddersfield for their part defended well for much of the second period, but the (mainly) Wigan pressure eventually told on them.

Super League table after 17 matches (points difference):

  1. Leeds Rhinos 25 points (+172)

  2. St Helens 24 points (+128)

  3. Wigan Warriors 23 points (+148)