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Super League: Widnes Vikings rally to beat Huddersfield Giants
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Huddersfield let slip a late lead for a second successive week as they lost 22-20 to Widnes Vikings at the Select Security Stadium.
Having failed to hang on to a 24-6 advantage at home to Hull KR last Sunday, eventually having to settle for a 24-24 draw, the Giants this time proved unable to retain an eight-point cushion.
Joe Mellor and Rhys Hanbury scored in the closing minutes as the Vikings, who had also been 10-0 behind earlier in the match, made it two wins from two this season.
Tries from Jermaine McGillvary and Leroy Cudjoe got the Giants off to a fine start and Eorl Crabtree put them back in control after Hanbury and debutant Paul Clough responded.
Hanbury's first real major contribution to the game came in the 10th minute, albeit with an error when he spilled Danny Brough's kick to allow McGillvary to break the deadlock.
Widnes responded well but shot themselves in the foot again when Danny Craven's pass was picked off by Cudjoe, who sprinted 80 metres to go in underneath the uprights and leave Brough an easy conversion.
Hanbury made amends for his earlier error as he collected the ball and side-stepped his way through the defence to score from close range just after the 30-minute mark.
They scored again before the break to take a surprise lead, Clough crashing over after the hosts had declined the chance to have a go at the posts with a penalty.
Danny Tickle landed his second conversion to make it 12-10, but the Giants hit the front again 10 minutes into the second half when Crabtree barged his way over.
Brough converted and although he missed a 40-metre penalty shortly afterwards, two further efforts were successful to make it 20-12 in the visitors' favour.
Yet Widnes kept pushing, Phil Joseph knocking on when well placed, and their perseverance paid off as pressure forced a handling error from Chris Bailey and Mellor nipped in to score.
The momentum was with them and they remarkably snatched the lead after Jack Owens appeared to have been halted in a three-man tackle in the left corner.
The ball somehow came out and Hanbury touched down in the scramble, leaving Huddersfield little time to hit back. They did their best to find a way through, but Widnes held firm under pressure to take a notable scalp.
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First Utility Super League Table
|5||Hull K R||0||0|
|7||Salford Red Devils||0||0|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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