Paul Anderson believes he’s done a good piece of business in securing a loan swap deal between Larne Patrick and Wigan’s Jack Hughes.
The Giants coach has revealed he’s been an admirer of the 22-year-old back-row forward for several years.
But it was only when Wigan renewed their long-standing interest in Patrick a couple of weeks ago that the possibility of bringing Hughes to the John Smith’s Stadium became a reality.
And Anderson is absolutely delighted.
“Jack’s someone we’ve been talking about at the Giants for some time,” said Anderson, whose assistant coach Keiron Purtill has worked with Hughes as part of the England Knights set=up.
“Keiron was really impressed with what he had to offer, while Brett Ferres said how impressed he was with Jack when they played for the Knights together last year.
“He’s a very good, gifted player, who Wigan also hold in very high regard.
“So when they asked again about Larne, we asked about Jack in return and, fortunately, we were able to sort a deal out.
“We wanted a young British player, who had something different in his game, and because Jack was desperate to get the opportunity to play on a regular basis we were able to sort something out.
“Jack’s definitely got some mongrel in him, and I know his aggressive style is just what we need.
“He has played at centre for Wigan in the past, but we intend to use him as a back-row rotation – second row is his preferred position – with Brett Ferres, Ukuma Ta’ai and Oliver Roberts. It gives us some great options.
“What Jack needs to be doing at this stage in his career is to play regularly – it’s been difficult when the current England Four Nations back row are in front of him at Wigan (Liam Farrell, Joel Tomkins and Sean O’Loughlin) – and we’re looking at giving him that opportunity here.”
The paperwork to bring Hughes to Huddersfield didn’t arrive before the Giants headed off to their three-day army camp in Catterick, with Anderson feeling his new arrival will have been pleased to have missed out!
“It was tough, which was the whole idea,” added the head coach.
“Whether it achieved all its objectives remains to be seen, but we do feel it was a very worthwhile exercise.
“I lost count last season of the number of times I said we won games based on ability rather than effort, and this camp will have helped to address that, because it was all about effort, working under fatigue and pulling together as a group.
“The time away was all about setting the tone for the whole of this pre-season.
“We’re really start cracking with the work on Monday, when Jack will get the chance to meet his new teammates for the first time.
“And even though the work we’ll be doing will be totally different to that the players experienced during camp, it’ll be a different type of hard work.
“Everyone knows that there are a couple of very hard months ahead of everyone. It’s a vitally important time of the year.”