LONDON: Steve Menzies kicked off his final Super League season in style as Catalan Dragons held off a late fightback to record a 32-24 win against Hull KR on Sunday.
Menzies, the former Australian international who won the 2008 NRL Grand Final with Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles, announced in the summer that, at the age of 39, this will be his final season.
And he crossed twice in the first half as the French side raced into a comfortable 22-2 lead that looked like being more than enough.
But Michael Dobson ensured a dramatic finish, the half-back crossing for the first of four second-half tries for the home side that put the game back in the balance.
Brent Webb, making his debut after signing from Leeds Rhinos in the off-season, went over late on for the Dragons to put the result beyond doubt, however, and ensure the French side started the new season with a bang.
Elsewhere on Sunday, title favourites Warrington Wolves put Castleford Tigers to the sword in a 42-24 victory.
Brett Hodgson supplied 10 points with the boot, while Ben Westwood crossed for two of the home side's seven tries.
Michael Shenton scored one of the Tigers' four tries on his second debut for the Super League outfit.
Jarrod Sammut's double was the highlight for Bradford Bulls as they ensured their 2013 campaign got off to a winning start with a 40-6 win over Wakefield Wildcats.
Jamie Foster, in his first Super League start for the Bulls since moving from St Helens, added a try and six goals for a personal haul of 16 points.
Tony Rea's London Broncos side were made to pay for a slow start as they fell to a 28-14 home defeat by Widnes Vikings.
The Vikings raced into an 18-0 lead at the break and despite three tries after the interval for the home side, two of which came from Kieran Dixon, Dennis Betts' side held on for the win.
The fixture gods had decreed that Nathan Brown's first game in charge of St Helens would come against his former club Huddersfield Giants and it was something of a nightmare for the former St George Illawarra Dragons head coach on Saturday.
The Giants ran out 40-4 winners at Langtree Park, with Leroy Cudjoe running in two of their seven tries.
Five Danny Brough goals helped the visitors to assemble a 22-0 half-time lead and it was more of the same after the break, as Mark Flanagan could only muster a solitary consolation try for St Helens late on.
On the opening night of action on Friday, defending champions Leeds Rhinos ran out comfortable 36-6 winners against Hull FC.
Hull skipper Gareth Ellis's highly anticipated return to his former club was something of an anti-climax after he injured his foot during the warm-up and did not take part.
In the absence of Ellis, signed from the Wests Tigers in the off-season, the Rhinos ran in six tries, while captain Kevin Sinfield added six more goals.
Wigan Warriors were also comfortable victors on the opening night, Pat Richards amassing 14 points in their 42-0 win against Super League new boys Salford City Reds.
Sam Tomkins crossed three times for the Warriors in their eight-try romp to spoil the Reds' party.