TOP Aussie duo Brad Drew and James Evans will be fit to face Leigh in the Giants' Super League X opener at The Coliseum on Saturday (6.05)!
Drew and Evans were forced to miss last weekend's defeat to Bradford Bulls with flu and a calf injury respectively.
But the pair proved their fitness in a behind-closed-doors full-contact clash between coach Jon Sharp's senior side and Lee St Hilaire's Under 21s on Saturday.
The top-secret session was hailed as a great success by Sharp, who believes all of his players will have benefited greatly from the competitive encounter.
"This was something we had planned as part of our final run-in to the new season, and I was delighted with the results," said Sharp.
"We were keen to keep it quiet so we could work on our moves, knowing there would be no-one watching what we were up to.
"The Under 21s didn't make it easy for the senior boys and it was obvious they loved getting stuck in.
"That guaranteed it was a highly competitive match, which was exactly what we needed right now.
"It was a session which was of major benefit to everyone, but I think the players who would have benefited the most were Brad and James.
"They were both gutted to miss the game at Bradford, and it wasn't easy trying to persuade them to sit it out!
"They looked very sharp and strong at the weekend and they are definitely back in the reckoning for Saturday's game at Leigh."
Sharp was also keeping a close eye on the way the Under 21s performed.
Included in that side was Newcastle Falcons rugby union centre Stephen Jones.
The former England Under 19 international played a full part in the session and didn't look out of place against Super League opposition.
He caught the eye on trial for the Giants in the pre-season Infirmary Cup clash at Halifax on January 3.
And after this weekend's showing remains a subject of interest.
"We intend talking to Stephen again over the next few weeks," confirmed Giants football manager Stuart Sheard.
"On Saturday, he looked good on defence and looked pretty quick on attack. There's definite potential.
"And we know how keen he is to play even more games for us."