Rick Stone knows if the Huddersfield Giants can play like they’ve trained, their place in next season’s Super League competition will be guaranteed.

Huddersfield travel to Salford Red Devils on Sunday for their opening Middle 8s clash as they embark on their battle for top-flight survival.

It’s a tough opener for new head coach Stone’s side, with their hosts having won 10 of their 23 Super League XXI fixtures, while the bottom-of-the-table Giants were successful on just six occasions.

But the Australian knows if his players are as positive on the competitive field as they are on the training pitch, victory can be achieved against Salford and Huddersfield will be in pole position to finish in the top three in the seven-match eight-team mini-league which is about to get under way.

Huddersfield Giants Supporters Association column: Let's get behind the boys!

“A lot has really pleased me since I’ve got here,” said former Newcastle Knights boss Stone, who arrived in England just over three weeks ago.

“And the boys’ keenness to learn is right up there.

“From day one they’ve been willing to embrace some new ideas and principles, which I believe is really important.

“It’s now a case of transferring all this from the training field into the games, and if we can successfully achieve this then we know what a strong position we’ll put ourselves in.

“But there’s no doubt the signs are looking very positive.”