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Friday, 14 December, 2018

In-form Huddersfield can edge past travel-sick Catalans

Dragons waiting on clearance to field Edwards

Leroy Cudjoe of Huddersfield should make his return
1 of 1

Challenge Cup quarter-final
Sky Sports Arena, 7.35pm Thursday

Huddersfield and Catalans would probably swap Ladbrokes Challenge Cup glory for survival in the Betfred Super League but either the Giants or the Dragons will be just one win from Wembley at close of play.

Anyone who fancies one of the two struggling sides to lift the famous old trophy in August can avail themselves of the 16-1 about Huddersfield or the 25-1 quotes about Catalans.

With bookmakers still going one third the odds to reach the final, there may be some each-way mileage in those quotes.

New Giants coach Simon Woolford has been in the country only a week and his message to his players may well be “keep up the good work”.

While the Australian has been waiting for his visa, Huddersfield have enjoyed their best spell of the season, winning four consecutive matches in all competitions, and Sky Bet offer a stand-out 8-13 about the hosts extending that sequence.

Steve McNamara’s visitors have produced an impressive recent run of results too with five wins in their last six outings. The only loss was a 26-12 reverse at league-leaders St Helens.

The Dragons won 27-6 when the teams met in France on Easter Monday but that should be disregarded as a form guide.

Huddersfield were woefully understrength, missing Danny Brough, Jermaine McGillvary, Jake Mamo and Leroy Cudjoe. Cudjoe is set to make his first appearance of the year following knee surgery.

The Dragons are hoping to give a debut to controversial Australian back-rower Kenny Edwards but are still waiting on clearance for the former Paramatta player.

Whoever the French club field, their away form is a major concern. They’ve lost their last 12 Super League matches on their opponent’s ground dating back to April 2017.

Their away league win was at Huddersfield and the layers make a triumph for the visitors a 15-8 chance, with the Dragons receiving a six-point start on the handicap.

That could well prove to be close to the mark as the Giants have become adept at grinding out results - their four straight wins have come by ten (twice), eight and three points.

With rain a possibility, Huddersfield are taken to edge a low-scoring contest by two converted tries or less at 2-1.

Recommendation
Huddersfield to win by one to 12 points
2pts 2-1 Paddy Power, Betfair


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Huddersfield have enjoyed their best spell of the season winning four consecutive matches in all competitions
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