11th August 2017


Rick Stone reviews the 18-4 Wigan Warriors loss

Foster Care

Rick Stone spoke to the media following the 18-4 loss to Wigan Warriors.

Stone was disappointed with the outcome of the match, but was quick to credit the hosts:

“I think the opposition were a bit better than us to be honest, a bit hungrier, a bit keener. We had our chances, we were close enough. We need to execute a bit better, but we still threw plenty of bullets, but they defended pretty well on their goal-line.

“They had a little bit more intent than us. A little bit more desire with their carries and defence. We scored the first one, but then we were chasing our tail a bit. The effort was good, but when you’re playing at this end of the season against a quality side, we need to couple that with some execution and some quality. We weren’t quite good enough tonight.”

The Head Coach also highlighted that he was pleased with the Giants defensive work, and gave his thoughts regarding the tries:

“Defensively we did some good stuff but so did the opposition on the goal-line. Both teams scrambled and organised the back line pretty well and managed to defuse most of the kicks. It was no surprise that three of the four tries came from kicks. It was one of those greasy conditions and it was where the tries were going to come from but the defence from both sides was pretty good.”

Despite the defeat, Stone insists that he has not given up hope on reaching the top four:

“There’s still a bit to go in this competition, so I haven’t given up hope for us, but it makes things more difficult of course. But as you saw last night, you’ll see a lot of upsets before the end of the competition.”

With only a handful of games to go in the Super 8s, Stone believes that the Giants need to keep working just as they have been doing, right until the very end, and expects nothing less:

“I think we need to play as well as we can. I think if you’re turning up to a game and you’re a professional, the job is to be as good as you can be, as an individual and as a team. You’ve got to have pride in your own performance and pride in the team’s performance.

“We’re a little bit behind, I understand that, but we’ve got five games to go, so there’s ten competition points up for grabs and we’ll see where it takes us.”

On the injury front, there are plenty of positives, as plenty of faces are set to return in the coming weeks, with a long-awaited return for Michael Lawrence, who featured and got some precious minutes under his belt:

“I think we’ve come through reasonably unscathed, so that’s a good thing. We have Leroy Cudjoe, Dale Ferguson and Ollie Roberts still to come back for us is a positive. We’ve been a bit light on back rowers, Hinchliffe playing back row for us in the last couple of weeks. We’ll welcome those boys back if they’re fit and healthy.

“It’s good to see Michael Lawrence back and playing. He’s worked really hard to get back and put himself in the frame before the end of the season. He’ll get better and he’ll be better for the run. He’s been turning up a little bit better at every training session, every week he’s been getting better and he’s been back in full training for three weeks now. That run around will help him for the better but I would suggest we won’t see the best of Michael Lawrence until next season but he’ll be a very valuable acquisition to us for the remainder of the season.”

The Giants travel to the KCOM Stadium next Friday to face Hull FC in Round 3 of the Super 8s, kick off 8pm.



Heikki Kovalainen





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