Huddersfield Giants 0-44 Leeds Rhinos: Leeds cruise to huge victory in West Yorkshire derby

Leeds Rhinos' Konrad Hurrell is tackled by St Helens Saints' Theo Fages (left) and Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook (right)
Leeds Rhinos' Konrad Hurrell is tackled by St Helens Saints' Theo Fages (left) and Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook (right)

Leeds boosted their Super League survival hopes with a thumping 44-0 win over Huddersfield that adds to the congestion at the bottom of the table.

The Rhinos scored 22 points in each half and kept their hosts scoreless to register their biggest win of the season and climb above the Giants into eighth place, two points clear of London Broncos and Hull KR with five matches left.

Blockbusting centre Konrad Hurrell was a thorn in Huddersfield's side, running in two of Leeds' eight tries, while winger Ash Handley marked his 100th appearance with a brace.

The Giants went into the game with high hopes of pulling clear of the danger zone after gaining away wins over Salford and Hull KR, but their home form could prove to be their undoing.

Simon Woolford's men have not won at the John Smith's Stadium since May and, on this form, will be sweating over their survival in the coming weeks.

It was an especially disappointing way for England winger Jermaine McGillvary to mark the 300th appearance of his career in front of a season's best crowd of 6,809.

Huddersfield enjoyed most of the early play and through aggressive defence forced two goal-line drop-outs but without managing to breach the Leeds line.

It was actually against the run of play when the visitors opened the scoring on 17 minutes, prop Adam Cuthbertson touching down centre Harry Newman's grubber kick after initially creating the position with a break through the middle.

Four minutes later, stand-off Robert Lui and second rower Rhyse Martin combined to get limping winger Tom Briscoe over for Leeds' second try which made it 10-0.

Only seconds earlier Briscoe had been on the ground in back play receiving treatment for a knee injury to which he succumbed before half-time. By then the Rhinos were comfortably in control.

Hurrell, who looked a threat with every touch of the ball, proved unstoppable from 15 metres out to score his first try and the Huddersfield defence also opened up invitingly for replacement hooker Brad Dwyer to grab his side's fourth.

Martin kicked three conversions to make it 22-0 at the break and Huddersfield's last chance to get back in the contest disappeared early in the second half when second rower Ukuma Ta'ai lost the ball going for the line.

Leeds were far more clinical and Handley scored his first try after the Giants' passing broke down on half way and scrum-half Richie Myler pounced on the loose ball on halfway to get the winger away.

Full-back Darnell McIntosh also got close, but his careless pass was intercepted by Dwyer, which created the position for Myler to get Hurrell crashing over for his second try.

And it was from another interception, this time by Lui, that Leeds scored their next try through substitute Liam Sutcliffe, while Myler laid on Handley's second and Martin took his goal tally to six from eight attempts to wrap up the easiest of victories.

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