Playing in the Challenge Cup is an inspiration for Huddersfield Giants overseas stars

The Giants' overseas stars can't wait to play in the Challenge Cup

Huddersfield Giants v Leeds Rhinos at the John Smith's Stadium, Huddersfield. David Faiumu

Being a part of rugby league’s most famous knockout competition could provide the inspiration for the Giants’ overseas stars to reach their full potential.

That’s the view of former New Zealand Test star David Faiumu as his club’s embarks on their 2014 Challenge Cup journey which he hopes will lead to Wembley.

It’s clearly not going to be the easiest of rides, judging by the fact the first obstacle in their path is Sunday’s demanding home mission against unbeaten Super League leaders St Helens in the fourth round (2.15).

But with Faiumu having already savoured the magic of Wembley, albeit as part of a losing Huddersfield side against Warrington in the 2009 final, he’s desperate to make a return – as are the likes of fellow overseas stars Chris Bailey, Jason Chan, Antonio Kaufusi and Ukuma Ta’ai.

“We just don’t have anything like the Challenge Cup in the Australian NRL, where all the overseas boys began their careers,” said the 30-year-old Faiumu, who played for North Queensland Cowboys in their 2005 NRL Grand Final defeat to Wests Tigers.

“So we always find it pretty exciting when the cup competition gets under way.

“We love the fact it’s a sudden-death competition with no second chances, because it’s a great way of making sure you play to your potential. You know if you don’t perform, it’s all over.

“And this type of format could be just what we need to get us playing at our best again.

“We know it’s a competition when anyone can win on the day, and it doesn’t matter how well or how badly you’ve been playing. It’s just down to how you perform for those 80 minutes.

“You know if you turn up with the right attitude, in the right frame of mind and are prepared to stick to your gameplan, anything is possible.

“And we know if we get that right we can beat Saints on Sunday.

“The fact that would also take us a step closer to Wembley makes it even more exciting.”

But Faiumu knows nothing would match the excitement of reaching Wembley itself.

“I know it should be a case of taking it one game at a time,” he added.

“Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done when it comes to the Challenge Cup, because you know that if you win a couple of games you can start to plan for a trip to one of the most famous stadiums in the world.

“I’m lucky enough to have played there before, but the fact we lost to Warrington in the 2009 final obviously took all the gloss off the occasion.

“A few of the boys also played in that final and would love to return, but there’s only Broughy and Baloo (coach Paul Anderson), who’ve actually gone to a final and won.

“Baloo keeps on telling us what a fantastic experience it is to win a Challenge Cup, and I like to listen to the tales he tells about what it’s like.

“I can’t think of anything better than being able to tell my own story about it one day. Doing it this year would be amazing!”

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