Huddersfield 28-40 Castleford: Tigers withstand Giants fightback
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 08/04/18 7:19pm
Castleford held off a second-half fightback from injury-hit Huddersfield to claim a 40-28 triumph at the John Smith's Stadium.
Former Huddersfield winger Greg Eden, Super League's top try-scorer in 2017, opened his account for the season on his return from injury as the Tigers moved to within two points of third-placed Warrington with three games in hand.
The result leaves Chris Thorman still looking for his first win as Huddersfield interim boss but he will be the happier of the two coaches after a spirited display from his youthful, patched-up side.
The Tigers were in complete control at half-time, leading 28-6, but the home side roared back in the second half with 17-year-old winger Innes Senior scoring two tries on his home debut.
Senior got his chance, along with twin brother Louis on the other wing, as Thorman grappled with an injury crisis that left him without seven first-choice players.
It began badly for the Giants when full-back Jared Simpson had the ball stolen by Alex Foster and that set up the position for hooker Paul McShane to open the scoring, touching down from Ben Roberts' grubber kick.
Huddersfield forward Daniel Smith was held up over the line during a rare foray into the visitors' half before Roberts combined with Jake Trueman to get winger Greg Minikin over for the Tigers' second try.
The impressive Foster grabbed a third after winning the race to McShane's grubber kick and centre Jake Webster charged over for another after Huddersfield were reduced to 12 men with Jordan Turner in the sin bin following a team warning.
The home side briefly stemmed the onslaught when prop Ukuma Ta'ai took Lee Gaskell's pass close to the line and juggled with the ball before touching down for a try converted by Jordan Rankin.
Eden added Castleford's fifth try on the stroke of half-time as they led 28-6 and there appeared no way back for the Giants.
However, they launched their comeback early in the second half when a break from Rankin created the position for Smith to force his way over the line.
The home side cut the gap further when Innes Senior finished off a smart move in the corner for his first try on 55 minutes before Ellis put three scores between the sides with a penalty.
Castleford were reduced to 12 men on 65 minutes when loose forward Adam Milner was sin-binned for use of the forearm and Huddersfield immediately took advantage by working Senior over for his second try.
Rankin's third goal, off the touchline, narrowed the deficit to just eight points but after Foster and Shannon Wakeman traded scores, Castleford captain Michael Shenton made sure of the win when he sliced through the Giants' defence for his side's seventh try in the last minute.