Huddersfield Giants head coach Rick Stone had to wait on players fitness checks rather welcoming returnees ahead of tomorrow night’s derby clash with Wakefield Trinity.
Stone had hoped that his side, who were 18-10 winners against Catalans Dragons at last weekend’s Magic Weekend, would be bolstered for the Super League showdown at Belle Vue.
Instead he was sweating on pack pairing Dale Ferguson and Sam Rapira being fit to face Chris Chester’s in-form side – the pair of them being declared ready to be installed in an unchanged 19-man squad.
“We are going to go with the same squad of 19 that we had for the trip up to Newcastle,” said Stone.
“However, we had to have a look at Dale, who had a back problem, and Sam, whose ankle is a little bit tight.
“But they have been doing okay and they are included for the Wakefield game.”
The Giants victory over Catalans at St James’ Park has put Stone’s side back in a position where a run of wins could thrust them back into the top eight.
However, the Giants boss admitted that they would need to be at their best against a Wakefield side whose own target is to break into the top four after their 34-12 Magic Weekend success against Widnes Vikings.
“It wasn’t pretty against Catalans, but the win will give us a lot more belief,” said Stone.
“Our defence was much better, but we still need to look at where we are on attack.”
There is just the one change to Chester’s Wakefield squad who won at the Magic Weekend with Mikey Sio replaced by Ashley Gibson.
HUDDERSFIELD GIANTS: Jake Mamo , Jermaine McGillvary, Leroy Cudjoe, Lee Gaskell, Aaron Murphy, Sam Rapira, Ryan Hinchcliffe, Shannon Wakeman, Dale Ferguson, Kruise Leeming, Sebastine Ikahihifo, Oliver Roberts, Paul Clough, Nathan Mason, Sam Wood, Darnell McIntosh, Alex Mellor, Adam O’Brien, Martyn Ridyard
WAKEFIELD TRINITY: Tinirau Arona, Joe Arundel, Matty Ashurst, James Batchelor, Mason Caton-Brown, Anthony England, David Fifita, Liam Finn, Ashley Gibson, Scott Grix, Keegan Hirst, Craig Huby, Ben Jones-Bishop, Danny Kirmond, Reece Lyne, Jacob Miller, Bill Tupou, Sam Williams, Kyle Wood
Giants Academy player Billy Hayes has joined Dewsbury Rams on a one month loan deal.
Giants Under 19 area away to Widnes Vikings tonight and the squad is: Alfie Copley, Matty English, Izaac Farrell, Jack Flynn, Jamie Greenwood, Lucas Hallas, Tom Hugill, Oliver Jamieson, Jon Luke Kirby, Tyllar Mellor, Connor Murphy, Josh Pinder, Jack Richardson, Oliver Russell, Ethan Salm, Louis Senior, Innes Senior, Ross Whitmore, Harry Woollard.