Huddersfield Giants were handed a double bonus as they prepare for a gruelling nine days of Super League action.
Following Good Friday’s home fixture against newcomers Celtic Crusaders (7.30pm), they travel to Hull KR on Easter Monday (2pm) and then go head-to-head with Leeds Rhinos at The Galpharm on Saturday week (6pm).
They do so in the knowledge that they are at home in the fifth round of the Carnegie Challenge Cup, having drawn Rochdale for the ties on the second weekend in May, and that they have a full squad to choose from with powerhouse prop Eorl Crabtree been found to have no case to answer at last night’s RFL disciplinary committee meeting.
The cup draw appears to have handed the Giants the best chance to progress to the last eight as they will face the lowest-ranked team left in the competition, Championship One bottom side Rochdale.
However, coach Nathan Brown was putting that particular contest on the back-burner as he looks at a weekend that could see his side build significantly on an impressive start to Super League XIV with Huddersfield third in the rankings after seven rounds of competition.
“It is good to be at home for the cup game, and for the fans it’s great,” said Brown.
“We have had a bit of a slow start at home in a couple games, but we’re happy.
“We have avoided Super League opponents, but we can’t be thinking about the cup game too much because we have got three big games coming up in Super League over the next week.
“We’ll have to see how we come through those three games before we can sit back and start thinking about our ambitions in the Challenge Cup.”
Giants prop Crabtree had been cited after the 42-16 win at Harlequins in the fourth round of the Challenge Cup at the weekend, but was found not guilty of striking with his knees.
Full Challenge Cup draw – Page 44.