HUDDERSFIELD have sights fixed on a second successive win when they visit Stockport tomorrow.
Having moved off the foot of the table last week following their excellent come-from-behind victory over Hull, there is no reason why coach Dan Hyde’s side can’t make it two wins on the bounce.
That’s especially so as Stockport are the side they leap-frogged last week to lift them off the bottom of National II North.
There are three changes from the team which started the Hull game, with Alex Battye getting the nod over Lawrence Sanderson at prop, while Ben Hoyle is preferred to George Hinchliff at wing forward.
The other change involves the highly experienced player-coach Scott Benton donning the No9 shirt in the absence of Chris Duffy, who is unavailable for the match tomorrow.
“It’s a shame that Chris is out because I felt he and Joel Hinchliffe at No10 combined really well last week against Hull,” reflected Hyde, who has also named himself on the subs’ bench.
“They were starting to gel really well, particularly in the second half when we began to get on top, so it’s a pity they can’t continue to develop their partnership at Stockport.
“With regards to the other changes, they are purely tactical and what we were looking for this week is different from what we were looking to achieve last week, and therefore we are picking people accordingly.
“Obviously everyone wants to start, but fortunately, I think most of our players are mature and experienced enough to realise that you have to adapt a different approach depending on who you are playing.
“I was very impressed with the way the lads stuck to their task last week, especially after having gone 21 points down in quite a short space of time.
“Many sides would have let their heads go down, but these guys showed a lot of maturity, and as well as scoring some excellent tries in the game, it was particularly pleasing that we actually nilled Hull in the second half.
“I think that is definitely a sign that we are moving in the right direction.”
With the exception of Benton at scrum half, Hyde has chosen the same back line which inflicted the 26-21 defeat on Hull, with two-try hero Ben Mitchell retaining his place on the wing outside the influential Lee Paxman and fellow centre Mike Clark, and Luke Booth on the opposite flank.
Tom Owen had a massive game last week against Hull, scoring one try and giving the scoring pass for two more. And after the experiment of trying him at stand-off, there is no doubt that full-back is where he really shines, especially when he uses his terrific pace when coming into the line on attack.
Huddersfield: Owen; Booth, Clark, Paxman, Mitchell; Hinchliffe, Benton; Stringwell, Murphy, Battye, N Rhodes, G Rhodes, Hoyle, Lewis, Sharpe. Subs: Sanderson, Birkhead, Hyde, Hinchliff, Coles.