HUDDERSFIELD Giants are facing an anxious wait over the fitness of Michael Lawrence.
The 22-year-old back-row forward suffered an ankle injury during the opening stages of his side’s 36-12 pre-season triumph over Super League rivals Widnes Vikings at the John Smith’s Stadium.
That proved the only real negative for head coach Paul Anderson’s men as they shook off the expected early rustiness to turn a 12-6 half-time deficit into a handsome 24-point triumph and put them in good heart ahead of their Super League XVIII opener at St Helens on Sunday, February 2.
But Anderson admits that at this stage he doesn’t know if Lawrence will be involved at Langtree Park in 12 days’ time.
“All we know is that Bruno (Lawrence) has an ankle issue and he’s going to be sent for scans to assess the full extent of the damage,” revealed Anderson.
“It’s one of those, where we just don’t know for certain right now and it’s a case of waiting to see. He could be okay in the next few days, or he could miss the start of the season, but we will know in the next couple of days.
“if he is ruled out for the start of the season, it’ll be really disappointing, because he’s an important person in our group.”
And Anderson admits that took the gloss off what he thought was an encouraging performance against the Vikings.
“That second-half performance showed we’re not a million miles away from where we need to be,” added Anderson, who was full of praise for all his players, but in particular the hat-trick exploits of hooker Shaun Lunt following his return to the club after his successful loan spell with Super League champions Leeds Rhinos.
“At the start of the game we were guilty of over-playing and we were punished for that by conceding those two early tries.
“But after that, we started to build some pressure, began to dominate them physically and gain our rewards.
“What we did in the second half is something we’ll now be looking to build on.”