NATHAN BROWN has warned his Giants to treat Wakefield Trinity Wildcats with the utmost respect – or suffer the consequences!
Huddersfield go into Sunday’s home Super League clash against their West Yorkshire rivals as red-hot favourites to chalk up a sixth win from eight top-flight starts.
The Giants chief will again rotate his squad, with several changes to the side that secured an impressive 38-16 triumph at Hull KR six days ago.
Brown remains 100% confident the players on duty are more than capable of producing a top-notch display, with Luke Robinson and David Faiumu sharing the captain’s armband in the absence of the ‘rested’ Kevin Brown.
But the head coach knows that if his side don’t go into the game with the right attitude, Huddersfield could end up having an uneasy afternoon, particularly with former Giants chief John Kear pulling the Wakefield strings.
“I’ve got an incredible amount of respect for what Keary is doing at Wakefield,” said Brown.
“Every year massive obstacles are put in his way, but I’ve never once heard him complain about it.
“He just gets on with the job and makes sure every one of his players puts in a performance for him and his team.
“They’ve already caused two great upsets this year, winning at Hull and Catalan when no-one gave them a prayer, and I expect them to cause a few more before the season’s over.
“And, to be honest, they were fairly unlucky not to have got another at home to Leeds last weekend.
“If the luck had been on Wakefield’s side, they could have led 18-0 at half-time. They just couldn’t get the ball over the line on a couple of occasions.
“Any side that can cause a side like Leeds that much trouble deserves complete respect, and that’s what we’ll be giving them.
“We know that if we don’t we could find it a real struggle. After getting back to winning ways at Hull KR last week that’s the last thing we want.”
Included in Wakefield’s line-up this weekend are former Giants Josh Griffin and Greg Johnson.
And Brown expects the duo to be at their very best.
“They’re both playing well at the moment and, again, all credit to Keary for that,” added Brown.
“Josh has been with us for a couple of years now and really needed to be playing Super League now, so I’m delighted he’s had this opportunity at Wakefield.
“Unfortunately, with the competition for places we’ve got on the centres here, it was always going to be tough for Josh to make the step up.
“And it’s also good to see how well Greg has settled in at the club, too. He’s produced a couple of pieces of individual brilliance.”
Giants officials are obviously hoping for another bumper turn-out for their latest West Yorkshire derby, even though it is Mother’s Day.
Opening attendances at the Galpharm this season have been encouraging, comfortably breaking the 8,000 average mark.
Those are mainly due to the fact the Giants have made a rock-solid start to the season, but also down to the initial supporter response to the club’s new Gameday Experience.
Key enhancements have included new features on the Giants’ big screen with the introduction of the ‘roving camera’, previous match highlights, try replays, new Big G animations and the popular supporter ‘Muscle Cam’ Feature.
The interactive pre-match Community Zone which opens from 2pm has been improved, with new games and appearances from Big G, non-playing players and the Huddersfield Giants’ very own Town Crier.
This Sunday Under 8s and under 9s community club teams from Huddersfield will compete in the pre-match curtain raisers on the Galpharm pitch from 2pm. Supporters are encouraged to arrive early to show their support for the youngsters, with teams from Meltham, Moldgreen, Newsome, Siddal, Slaithwaite, St Josephs and Underbank taking part.
“We are delighted with the feedback we have received from supporters about the 2011 Huddersfield Giants Gameday experience,” said Giants marketing manager James Brammer.
“We are committed to making our matchday as interactive as possible to ensure our supporters are enjoying the experience from the moment they approach the stadium to when they leave.”
Huddersfield’s Under 20s host Wakefield in their latest Valvoline Cup clash at the YMCA tomorrow (2.00).