HUDDERSFIELD Giants have been handed an explosive opening to Super League XIII – at home to champions Leeds Rhinos!
Coach Jon Sharp’s side entertain their West Yorkshire rivals at the Galpharm Stadium on Sunday, February 10 (3.00) when a five-figure crowd should be guaranteed.
That’s quickly followed six days later with another West Yorkshire derby at Steve McNamara’s Bradford Bulls in front of the Sky TV cameras.
It is one of four Giants’ fixtures that will be shown live on satellite television.
The other three are home games – against Catalans Dragons on Friday, April 4, Wakefield Trinity Wildcats eight days later and Warrington Wolves on Saturday, July 19.
Sky TV’s Saturday games will, as normal, kick-off at 6.00, but the company have announced Friday fixtures now get under way at 7.30 instead of the previous 8.00 starts.
There are again 27 rounds in Super League, including the Millennium Magic weekend when the Giants face Warrington Wolves in Cardiff on Saturday, May 3, with the kick-off time still to be confirmed.
The Millennium Stadium encounter is one of four against Paul Cullen’s Wolves, with Huddersfield facing last season’s play-off opponents Hull, St Helens and Catalans three times. They have two home games against Saints and Catalans.
As well as the Super League fixtures, the dates for the Challenge Cup have also been announced, with the quarter-finals on the weekend of June 1, semi-finals on July 27 and the Wembley final on August 30, just one week before the end of the regular League season. The Giants’ final Super League round game is at Warrington on Sunday, September 7
One date that has already become popular with many fans is the trip to South of France and the Catalans Dragons clash in Perpignan, which next season for the Giants will be on Saturday, May 24.
And there will obviously be a great deal of interest in the first game against Wakefield on April 12 when former Huddersfield favourites Brad Drew and Paul Reilly play against their old club.