THE forwards are expecting a real battle – and success – as Halifax travel to Sheffield Eagles in tomorrow night’s televised Kingstone Press Championship qualifying play-off at the Don Valley Stadium (7.30pm, Premier Sports).
Halifax prop Ben Davies, who joined the club in July after a brief spell at Castleford, is under no illusions as to how the play-offs should be approached.
“The only option we should be looking at is winning the competition – it is as simple as that,” said the 23-year-old forward.
But Eagles opposite number Mitch Stringer is just as determined to get to the Grand Final for the third year running and claim a memorable victory for the defending champions.
“At the start of the season we said that we wanted to get to both the Northern Rail Cup final and the Championship Grand Final,” said Stringer.
“After our defeat to Leigh we sat down and said we really have to focus on the Grand Final and that is what we have done. I honestly think we will come into some good form now and hopefully get to the final and win for the second year.”
Sheffield finished the Championship in second place with Halifax just behind in third, and the winner of tomorrow’s game will have a bye in the second week of play-offs – whereas the losing team will play at home in week two against the elimination play-off winners.
Halifax head coach Karl Harrison picks from a strong squad and his side go into the game on the back of two wins.
Stringer is a doubt due to a back injury and the Eagles, who were beaten by Featherstone and Doncaster in their last two outings, also wait on half back Pat Waller, who has an ankle ligament injury which may keep him out.