The Toronto Wolfpack faced off against Huddersfield Giants in a bumper Coral Challenge Cup Fifth Round tie, and the Canadian side finally found that winning feeling.
Despite the game being played at the John Smiths Stadium, it was a Wolfpack home game due to the draw of the cup and it was the home side who crashed over for the first points of the game.
After a goal-line drop out gave Toronto a repeat set, and on tackle four the ball was pushed out to Ricky Leutele who dived over.
The Wolfpack picked up a second try just a few moments later as a Joe Mellor kick, behind the Giants line, was picked up by Leutele who grounded for his second.
Both were converted by Gareth O’Brien for a 12-0 lead.
Huddersfield looked to work their way back into the game, but the final play of their sets were not good enough.
Just after the 20 minute mark, the Giants conceded a penalty in front of the posts after putting some pressure on the Wolfpack.
Gareth O’Brien slotted the two pointer to further extend the home sides lead.
The Giants just couldn’t seem to get a grip on the game, as the Wolfpack attacked the line once more but luckily for the away side, Gareth O’Brien was caught on the last tackle.
Back to back penalties from the Wolfpack gave Huddersfield decent field position but a poor offload from Darnell McIntosh landed in the hands of the returning Chase Stanley to nullify the Giants threat.
More ill-discipline from Simon Woolford’s side gave O’Brien another chance to add two points, and the full-back once again obliged for a 16-0 lead.
HALF-TIME: Toronto Wolfpack 16-0 Huddersfield Giants
After being kept quiet in the first half, Huddersfield were determined to score the first points of the second period. Toronto were fighting equally as hard to keep the Giants out and did incredibly well to do so.
The away side did manage to earn back-to-back repeat sets close to the Wolfpack line but with a lack of clinical finishing from Huddersfield let Toronto off the hook.
The horrid conditions in West Yorkshire was causing havoc for both sides with Toronto seeming to be coping much better in the swirling rain.
Another penalty conceded from the Giants with 15 minutes to go allowed O’Brien to push the Wolfpack into a 18-0 lead and a place in the sixth round ever more likely.
Another penalty from O’Brien just before the 70th minute ricocheted off the post, and straight into the hands of the Wolfpack and they forced yet another repeat set with a goal-line drop out.
Unfortunately for the home-side, they knocked the ball on before they could run it back.
With five minutes remaining, Toronto controlled the game well as O’Brien kicked in behind the Giants to slow the game down.
After such a promising start to the season, Simon Woolford will be disappointed with this performance from his side. On the flip side, Brian McDermott will be pleased after finally picking up a win this season as they look to take this performance into Super League.
FULL-TIME: Toronto Wolfpack 18-0 Huddersfield Giants
O’Brien, Kay, Stanley, Leutele, Miloudi, Mellor, McCrone, Sidlow, Ackers, Springer, Olbison, Thompson, Dixon
Interchanges: Mullally, Wallace, Lussick, Gigot
Tries: Leutele (2)
Goals: O’Brien (5/6)
McIntosh, McGillvary, Wardle, Turner, Wood, Russell, Sezer, Matagi, Holmes, Gavet, Edwards, Murphy, Clough
Interchanges: O’Brien, Lawrence, Hewitt, Wilson
Referee: S. Mikalauskas
Touch Judges: R. Thompson, J. Vella