THIS wasn’t the way Micky Higham wanted to remember his 500th career match.

And Leigh need an instant shot of reality if they’re to make a third successive Middle 8’s campaign as painless as possible.

As Daniel Mortimer suggested after Huddersfield secured their Super League status for another 12 months:” I could see a lot of effort but effort by itself doesn’t get you the win.”

Head coach Neil Jukes agreed with the assessment after Centurions’ fourth successive away trip.

“I can’t knock the effort but there has got to be more quality,” he said. “There were too many people putting themselves under pressure.

“There were too many silly scenarios and we were pretty dumb at times.”

On Higham’s landmark appearance Jukes added:” As an achievement it is unbelievable. But hopefully he still has some more things to achieve with us this year.

“Micky has played at top clubs like St Helens, Wigan and Warrington and maintained his spot. It just shows what an incredible athlete and what a dedicated person he is.”

Jukes’ latest line-up saw Gareth Hock’s return from knee surgery while Mortimer partnered Josh Drinkwater in the halves with Ben Reynolds left out of the squad.

Hock hadn’t featured since May 21 and it showed in the briefest of opening stints. His second after half-time was more encouraging for the battles ahead.

Leigh only trailed 8-0 at the break courtesy of Lee Gaskell’s 21st minute try and two Danny Brough goals.

But within seven minutes of the re-start Huddersfield turned their earlier possession into match winning points.

Ukuma Ta’ai and Gaskell again went over for touch downs, both improved by influential Brough.

Leigh did get their act together and could have added more than Drinkwater’s try just before the hour.

Instead, Huddersfield made the game safe with Leroy Cudjoe’s 74th minute try and two more Brough goals.

“We turned up for one another and ha d a real dig,” added Jukes. “But at times we just about had them when someone across the board, from wing to wing, different individuals at different times did stuff to keep piling pressure on ourselves.

“We bot doing the fundamentals consistent enough and it has been the story if our season. The problem us you don’t get the energy to do anything with the ball.

“You spend half the time defending but also defending your own line which is a lot harder than defending the opposing line.

“We have got to get to a game where we click through it. And we are looking for some confidence and consistency going into the 8’s. I saw a few things we can get confidence from.”

Match stats:


Rankin: McGillvary, Cudjoe, Wood, McIntosh; Gaskell, Brough: Rapira, Leeming, Ikahihifo, Roberts, Ferguson, Hinchcliffe; substitutes: O’Brien, Wakeman, Clough, Ta’ai.

Tries: Gaskell (21 and 47), Ta’ai (44), Cudjoe (74)

Goals: Brough (5)

Brown; Higson, Crooks, Langi, Dawson; Mortimer, Drinkwater; Hock, Higham, Hansen, Paterson, Vea, Stewart; substitutes: Pelissier, Tickle, Hopkins, Burr.

Tries: Drinkwater (57)

Goals: None

Half-time: 8-0

Referee: Scott Mikalauskas

Attendance: 5,535