Hull KR suffered a third straight defeat as Huddersfield Giants claimed a 22-4 victory to maintain their perfect start to the Super League season.

James O’Brien presents the 30-second verdict from Craven Park.

Analysis

It is only early days but it is looking ominous for a side that were the pre-season relegation favourites.

Unlike last week’s hammering by Leeds Rhinos, Rovers had plenty of good ball against the Giants.

That they could not turn pressure into points and failed to truly test the Giants until Ben Crooks’ late consolation try must be a huge concern.

The Robins battled hard throughout in blustery conditions and their effort could never be questioned.

But the lack of quality in Tony Smith’s squad has been exposed in the last two weeks and KR appear to be on course for another relegation battle with tough fixtures ahead of them.

Rovers needed a fast start after the Headingley debacle but instead Lee Gaskell’s kick-off held up in the wind and the hosts were immediately on the back foot.

The Giants opened the scoring inside four minutes, Louis Senior evading Greg Minikin’s tackle to touch down in the corner after KR had knocked on at the end of their first set.

Aidan Sezer’s touchline conversion hit the post and the Robins went on to enjoy a spell of pressure with the wind at their backs.

But elementary errors let Huddersfield off the hook and Rovers found themselves 10-0 down after Lee Gaskell ghosted over untouched.

The Robins dominated the 20 minutes up to half-time but rarely threatened with their one-out rugby, debutant Joe Keyes coming the closest to breaking through when he was held up over the line.

There was a lengthy delay at the start of the second half as Giants prop James Gavet received treatment before being stretchered off in a neck brace.

Rovers were playing with more energy but continued to lack cohesion and died with the ball on the last time after time.

Huddersfield had defended stoutly and when they eventually got another look at KR’s try line they came away with points.

The Giants isolated Harvey Livett and Paul Clough span out of his tackle to touch down and put the visitors out of sight.

Will Dagger failed to make the 10 from the restart and Huddersfield were in again when Suaia Matagi touched down despite being surrounded by KR defenders.

Louis Senior of Huddersfield Giants celebrates his try against Hull KR
Louis Senior of Huddersfield Giants celebrates his try against Hull KR

Dagger floated the subsequent restart out on the full as Rovers continued to unravel and it appeared to be a case of damage limitation in the final quarter. 

Crooks gave the Craven Park faithful something to cheer with an acrobatic finish in the corner 10 minutes from time but it was a night to forget for the Robins.

Key moment

It was only a matter of seconds into the game but losing the contest from the kick-off set the tone for another hugely frustrating evening. The start was vital after being blown away by the Rhinos last time out and Rovers could find no way back after Senior’s early try.

Good day – Kyle Trout

The forward was introduced in the second half in tough circumstances and was a shining light for the hosts. He ate up the metres and tried to get his side going in defence. It was an impressive effort in a losing cause.

Bad day – Harvey Livett

It is harsh to pick out one player but nothing came off for the back-rower. More often than not he was put under pressure by his own team-mates with an unnecessary or poor pass and just had one of those nights.

Hull KR coach Tony Smith and his staff pitchside in Perpignan

Hull Live has launched a dedicated WhatsApp news service to keep you up to date with the very latest from Hull KR.

If you're on your mobile phone right now, CLICK HERE to sign up for free and make sure you follow the instructions.

If this link doesn't work or you're not on your phone, click here to find out how to sign up manually, and for more info about the service. Your number won't be shared with anyone else in the group.

The bigger picture

Rovers take on Castleford Tigers next before dates with Wigan Warriors, Warrington Wolves and St Helens in March. It is hard to see many points from that run of fixtures. They desperately needed the two points on Friday night but worryingly came up well short.

Hull KR: Will Dagger, Greg Minikin, Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Kane Linnett, Ben Crooks, Joe Keyes, Ryan Brierley, Will Maher, Matt Parcell, Dan Murray, Harvey Livett, Matty Storton, Dean Hadley.

Bench: Robbie Mulhern, Mitch Garbutt, Kyle Trout, Elliot Minchella.

Huddersfield: Darnell McIntosh, Jermaine McGillvary, Jake Wardle, Sam Wood, Louis Senior, Lee Gaskell, Aidan Sezer, Matty English, Adam O'Brien, Suaia Matagi, Aaron Murphy, Joe Wardle, Michael Lawrence.

Bench: Paul Clough, Kenny Edwards, James Gavet, Ukuma Ta'ai.