LUKE ROBINSON can’t wait to lead out the side for the ‘Return of the Giants’ clash against Hull KR at the Galpharm Stadium tonight (7.15).
Huddersfield have spent the past two months on the road – they’ve played their last three ‘home’ Super League fixtures at The Shay in Halifax – to enable the Galpharm Stadium pitch to be re-laid.
That means the 27-year-old England hooker will have the honour of being the first Giants captain to take charge of the side on the new surface.
He admits that in itself makes the occasion special, but he’s also relishing the chance to lead the Giants by example in the absence of injured captain Kevin Brown (out for a month with a knee injury) and help his side return to winning ways.
And with Giants chairman Ken Davy ready to make a ‘blockbusting’ announcement to the fans at half-time, Robinson believes tonight could be one of the most memorable.
“It’s going to be a great experience for me and the team to get back to the Galpharm,” said Robinson, who earlier in the year was joint captain of the side in Brown’s absence with David Faiumu.
“But I did enjoy my time at Halifax because that ground is nearer to my home and I got an extra 15 minutes in bed!
“Having said that, the Galpharm Stadium is where our home is, this is Huddersfield and it’s where we want to be playing, in front of our great supporters.
“And I’m personally very honoured to know I’ll be standing in as captain.
“I feel privileged as it was always one of my ambitions to be a captain, and be thought of as a leader when I was older. Unfortunately for me though, I led the team out against Cas in the Cup last week and we lost!
“But hopefully I can lead us out to a win this week.”
Injuries to a number of key players has made the Giants’ task far harder, with half-a-dozen front-line players missing again this weekend.
But the Huddersfield play-maker refuses to use this as an excuse as he believes the squad are still good enough to win.
“You’re always concerned, obviously,” he added.
“Whether I’m playing table tennis or Connect Four I always want to win, and when I’m not winning it’s not good.
“With the team we’ve assembled we feel we should be genuine title contenders, and our form hasn’t mirrored that over the last couple of weeks.
“Like we’ve said before, there have been injuries, but the players who went out there are still good enough to win.
“Though it’s not like our season’s over already, there is still a long way to go, and still a long time to build momentum and have a good run.
“But we’re not looking too far into the future, we’re just concentrating on the next game and hopefully we can start building our confidence back up with a win against Hull KR.”
And Robinson also appreciates the hard work the Giants staff have put into promoting their game against the Rovers and their return to the Galpharm, and hopes their hard work can be rewarded with a big crowd to cheer on the team.
“The Giants as a club are making a big effort to spread the word that we’re coming home and that will hopefully mean there’s going to be a decent crowd.
“Hopefully we can put a good show on for them unlike the last couple of weeks.”
League Express managing editor Martyn Sadler is the guest speaker at the next Senior Giants meeting on Wednesday (August 3).
It will take place in the Galpharm Stadium Football Trust Suite at 2.15, and all are welcome.