Angry coach Gareth Lewis is hoping watching a ‘video nasty’ will hold the key to a rejuvenated Huddersfield performance at home to National II North leaders Ampthill at Lockwood Park tomorrow.
Newly-promoted Huddersfield’s promising start to the season hit a low six days ago with the demoralising 27-18 defeat at bottom club Stockport, who went into the game with nine straight defeats.
It was a defeat player-coach Lewis admits he’s struggling to get over.
And having forced his players to watch the whole game again on video at training on Tuesday, he’s hoping his teammates are feeling just as much pain as himself and are equally as desperate to bounce straight back with a top performance against this season’s early pacesetters.
“It wasn’t a pretty video to watch,” said Lewis.
“It was bad on the day, and it certainly didn’t get any better the second time around!
“To be honest, it just reinforced what a bad performance it was. I know the players were far from happy with what they served up and I’m sure they found it very tough having to watch it back.
“That was certainly the intention, because we’re looking for a positive reaction this weekend, and showing them where they went wrong on the video was a good place to start.
“Our concentration in defence, in particular, was shocking, and that’s something we’ve been working on putting right for this weekend. If we don’t, then a side like Amphtill will make us pay a very high price.
“This game really is all about looking for the right response from our players to what was a totally unacceptable performance at Stockport last weekend.
“I’m confident the fact we’re up against the leaders will make sure our attitude is spot-on and we can right the many wrongs of a week ago.”
Lewis has made a couple of changes to his line-up to face an Amphtill side containing a number of handy South Sea Islanders and vastly-experienced former Championship players.
Chris Bell has been switched from full-back to his favoured fly-half role, where he will be partnered at half-back by Dan Jeffrey, who gets the nod over Joel Hinchcliffe.
With dangerman Tom Hodson continuing to be sidelined with an ankle injury, Dave Hall has been pencilled in to take the full-back berth, while in the pack Alex Battye gets the chance to start at prop ahead of James Purcell.
“It’s going to be a big day for everyone, and we’re obviously hoping the changes pay off,” added back-row forward Lewis, who has again named himself on the bench.
“But I’m particularly keen to see how Alex Battye takes his chance.
“Over the past couple of seasons, he struggled to make a starting spot his own, and this could be his big chance to finally nail a place down.
“Having said that, this match is the chance for everyone to prove to what happened last week at Stockport was just a one-off.”