Huddersfield Giants winger Adam Swift hailed as Leeds Rhinos boss Rohan Smith questions key call

Huddersfield head coach Ian Watson heaped praise on winger Adam Swift, whose second half performance helped the Giants twice hit back from a double-figure deficit to sink Leeds Rhinos 30-24 at Headingley.

Swift pummelled the depleted Rhinos right flank as the Giants grabbed a win that saw them build on last week’s stunning Challenge Cup quarter-final win at Catalans Dragons and seal their first victory at their Yorkshire rivals in six years.

“You can’t under-estimate the importance of having a winger who can sniff out a try and Swifty is a different level of quality,” said Watson.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“He is something that we needed, and something top teams should have in terms of speed and finishing. He’s unbelievably cheeky in terms of his character but what is really clear about him is how much he wants to win.”

Trailing 12-2 at the break, Huddersfield surged back level through tries from Esan Marsters and Elliot Wallis, then drew level again after the Rhinos had restored their advantage.

With the hosts losing both Harry Newman and David Fusitu’a to injuries, the visitors went on to ruthlessly exploit the weaknesses in the hosts’ ranks and Adam Clune burst clear in the dying stages to put the seal on a famous Giants win.

“We showed tremendous character and to come back not once but twice was phenomenal,” added Watson. “The boys made some changes in the second half and we thoroughly deserved the win in the end.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“I think there’s still plenty more in us in terms of what we want to do. There is improvement in us and this group has a different mentality, they have shown resilience to get through some tough away games and it’s good for us to winning at a place like Leeds for the first time in six years today.”

Ian Watson celebrates with Adam Clune after victory over Leeds. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/ Watson celebrates with Adam Clune after victory over Leeds. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/
Ian Watson celebrates with Adam Clune after victory over Leeds. (Photo: Allan McKenzie/

Leeds head coach Rohan Smith said the injuries cost his side dear but also questioned the decisions that led to a late Jake Connor penalty that put Huddersfield in front for the first time.

Lachie Miller was barged backwards over his own line before kicking the resulting drop-out short, and giving Connor the simplest chance to kick the resulting penalty from in front of the posts.

“At 24-24 there’s another huge goal that goes against us,” insisted Smith. “I don’t think that was the right time for it (a short kick), it was an all-or-nothing play that we didn’t need at that point in time. But I think it’s an incorrect call that leads to that.”

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.