CHRIS THORMAN can’t wait for the new Academy Under 19s competition to get under way.
Huddersfield’s former Super League captain is back in town as an assistant to head coach Paul Anderson after four years away.
And one of his roles will be to lead the Giants’ challenge in the newly-formed Under 19s competition, which gets under way with a trip to St Helens in a curtain-raiser to the clubs’ Super League opener on Saturday, February 2 (4.45).
The fixtures were released this week, with the likes of Featherstone Rovers and Sheffield Eagles joining a competition which has replaced last season’s Under 20s and 18s formats.
Thorman’s youngsters will again play their home fixtures at Huddersfield YMCA’s Laund Hill ground, with the 32-year-old former York City Knights player-coach excited about what the future may hold.
“As soon as I saw the quality of the youngsters I might have at my disposal it gave me a massive lift,” said Thorman (pictured), who also has a major coaching responsibility with the backs in the Super League squad.
“They look big, strong and skilful, and I can’t wait to see what they can do in the competitive environment.
“I knew virtually nothing about the bulk of the players who’ll be in the 19s, but that means they’ve got a clean slate with me.
“I’ve always taken a great deal of pride in seeing a youngster you’ve helped at the start of their career come up through the ranks and establish themselves at first-team level, and that’s something I’ll be in a position to do again as Under 19s coach.
“I expect a number of the younger boys in the Super League squad will spend time with me in the 19s when the new season gets under way, and I know they have the ability to make a massive impression in this new competition.”
Huddersfield’s first home fixture is against London Broncos on Saturday, February 9 (2.00), with the final game of the regular season at Laund Hill against Wakefield Trinity Wildcats on Saturday, August 31 (also 2.00).