Super League: Huddersfield Giants 14-13 Leeds Rhinos

Lee Gaskell
Lee Gaskell's drop-goal means the past three meetings between these sides have all been decided by a kick from the field
Betfred Super League
Huddersfield (6) 14
Tries: Sezer 2 Goals: Sezer 2 Drop goals: Sezer, Gaskell
Leeds (4) 13
Tries: Thompson, Handley Goals: Martin 2 Drop goals: L Sutcliffe

Lee Gaskell's last-ditch drop-goal gave Huddersfield a dramatic first Super League win of the season over Leeds.

The Rhinos took the lead through an early try from Bodene Thompson before Aidan Sezer converted his own score to give the hosts a narrow half-time lead.

Sezer raced over inside the first minute of the second half only for Ash Handley to reduce the arrears.

A Rhys Martin goal levelled it and the teams exchanged drop goals before Gaskell kicked the winner at the death.

Following an even first period the game came to life after the break.

Gaskell broke through the line to give Sezer his second score of the game and the Australian then kicked another goal to put the Giants into a 12-4 lead.

There was then a moment of controversy when Adam O'Brien thought he had gone over for another try for the hosts only for it to be ruled out because team-mate Kenny Edwards was holding Kruise Leeming, preventing him from stopping the play.

Luke Yates could not quite ground the ball after being played in by Ricky Leutele as Huddersfield looked for the try that would have given them breathing room and they were quickly made to pay.

Liam Sutcliffe showed good composure to beat a man and then hand the ball off for Handley to touch down and Rhys Martin kicked a penalty to level the scores up at 12-12.

Leeds took the lead when Sutcliffe landed a drop goal on the third attempt, via the crossbar, but Sezer quickly levelled the scores with his own kick.

Sutcliffe then missed his third drop goal of the afternoon and the Giants won it when Gaskell kicked between the posts from about 40 metres out.

That consigned Richard Agar's men to a fifth consecutive defeat, while Huddersfield, who visit table-topping St Helens next week, are off the mark to leave Wakefield and Leigh as the only winless teams in the league.

Huddersfield head coach Ian Watson told BBC Radio Leeds:

"It feels good. It was a bit sloppy but a win's a win and it was important to get some points on the board.

"I just thought it was going to be one of those days when their kick hit the crossbar and went over.

"It probably should have been more comfortable in the end, especially when we'd been eight points up.

"It's a good one for the boys. It's great that we've got the win but we've still got things to work on. It's going to be an ongoing process for a while yet."

Leeds head coach Richard Agar told BBC Radio Leeds:

"I'm disappointed in how we shot ourselves in the foot and how we managed the game.

"We needed more from our experienced players today. It wasn't good enough.

"When you've got players missing you need experienced players to step up and that didn't happen enough today.

"I thought Liam was probably our best player so I don't want to be too hard on him [for the missed kicks]. I'm more disappointed with how we mismanaged the game."

Huddersfield Giants: Gaskell, McGillvary, McQueen, Leutele, McIntosh, Cogger, Sezer, Yates, Cunningham, Gavet, Edwards, Jones, Greenwood.

Interchanges: English, Lawrence, Wood, O'Brien.

Leeds Rhinos: Broadbent, T. Briscoe, Hurrell, Mellor, Handley, L Sutcliffe, Leeming, Oledzki, Dwyer, Prior, Walters, Thompson, O'Connor.

Interchanges: Martin, Vuniyayawa, Donaldson, L. Briscoe.

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