Super League: Bradford Bulls 6-42 Huddersfield Giants
Bradford (0) 6
- Tries: Foster
- Goals: Foster
Huddersfield (18) 42
- Tries: Ferguson (2), Grix, Patrick, Lunt, Ferres, Mullally
- Goals: Brough (7)
Huddersfield Giants displayed their title credentials as they brushed aside Bradford Bulls at the Etihad Stadium.
Dale Ferguson crossed within the first 10 minutes and Scott Grix and Larne Patrick gave the Giants a comfortable lead at half-time.
Ferguson then scored his second before Jamie Foster went in for what was only a consolation reply for Bradford.
Shaun Lunt, Brett Ferres and Anthony Mullally added tries as the second-placed Giants underlined their quality.
Huddersfield's Paul Anderson and Bradford counterpart Francis Cummins have enjoyed fine debut seasons in charge of the West Yorkshire clubs, both of them bringing about a marked improvement in the form of their respective sides.
Huddersfield coach Paul Anderson
“This group are working very hard at the moment - we want to go through teams not around them”
Bradford ran out 43-18 winners over Huddersfield in round five of Super League in March, a defeat which prompted Giants head coach Anderson to say he felt "embarrassed", but having won six of their last seven games, the former Bulls prop is now feeling much happier.
They have never reached the Grand Final at Old Trafford, but recent performances have shown they possess the talent to go all the way, strong defensively and ruthless in attack.
The Bulls looked off the pace for most of the game, and despite just one victory in their last five league games, will still be hopeful of finishing in the play-off spots, having failed to do so for the last four seasons.
Huddersfield stormed ahead early on when Ferguson dived over and Grix touched down after Leroy Cudjoe rose highest to tap back Luke Robinson's kick.
Bradford slowly stirred in response and Welsh winger Elliot Kear had an effort ruled out after the video referee adjudged Jamie Langley to have committed an infringement.
But the Giants forged further in front as Patrick spun away from the Bulls defence to go over in-between the posts, with Danny Brough adding the third of seven successful kicks during the game as his side led 18-0 at half-time.
Bradford managed to hold out for almost quarter of an hour in the second half before Ferguson grabbed his second, latching on to Robinson's pass before dancing around the defence to touch down.
Bradford finally gave their fans something to cheer about as Foster collected Kear's offload to score, and converted his own try.
It proved to be a false dawn, though, as Lunt scrambled over the line, Ferres went over in the corner and Mullally bagged his first Super League try to give the final scoreline an emphatic look.
VIEW FROM THE DRESSING ROOMS
Huddersfield coach Paul Anderson:
"Our performance was workmanlike and we created a lot of chances. Every time we decided to be direct, we created havoc.
"This group are working very hard at the moment - we want to go through teams not around them. I'd be lying if I said i didn't tell the players we owed them one.
"This is a great occasion. It is a carnival atmosphere and it attracts people to the game. It gets the crowd excited and makes the players want to throw the ball about.
"You have to take the emotion out of the game, but at times we didn't do that."
Bradford coach Francis Cummins:
"It was a bad day at the office, but they were the better team. We have people missing and there were some below par performances in there.
"We knew we had to be at our best, but we weren't and we should have been better.
"It was a tough game for Jamie Foster to come back into and I had no choice but to put him in.
"The way to play in these conditions is not to have repeat sets against you. When you get into field positions, you need to make the most of it and we didn't do that."
SUNDAY'S MAGIC WEEKEND LINE-UPS
Bradford: Foster, Kear, Blythe, Lulia, Purtell, Addy, Sammut, Scruton, L'Estrange, Langley, Olbison, Whitehead, Walker.
Replacements: Diskin, Donaldson, Evans, Fairbank.
Huddersfield: Grix, McGillvary, Cudjoe, Ferres, Murphy, Brough, Robinson, Crabtree, Lunt, Kopczak, Ta'ai, Chan, Ferguson.
Replacements: Patrick, Cording, Mullally, Dwyer.
Referee: James Child (Dewsbury).