06th September 2017


Huddersfield Giants Head Coach spoke to ahead of Saturday's trip to Salford Red Devils.

Foster Care

Huddersfield Giants Head Coach Rick Stone is looking forward to Saturday afternoon’s fixture against Salford Red Devils at the AJ Bell Stadium, kick-off 1:30pm.

Salford sit one place and one point above the Giants with both sides eager to finish the season strongly, Stone explaining:

“For us, it’s important how we manage our last little bit. We’d like to think we’ve taken some progressive steps. We’re stinging a bit after last week but want to get back on the horse and make amends. We haven’t had a great record at Salford in the last few years and they’ve beaten us at home too.

“Looking at their last few games they haven’t won any but haven’t been too far away. We know the intent we want to bring to the game so we’ll see how it goes. Every professional sports man wants to win at everything and as good as we want to be we want to make sure we walk away and say that we’ve played our best.”

Stone added:

“The top four is probably a fair way away from us at the moment. Mathematically it’s a hope but realistically it will be tough. Finishing the season strongly is the most important thing and I think that we’ve taken a few steps in the right direction. We’re really disappointed about Friday night because we didn’t manage the game as well as we could have but that’s the past and we’ve moved on from that. We need to refocus and ask ourselves what do we want from that last three games.

“We’ve taken some steps in the right direction. We had a pretty healthy side at the start of the season but then a few boys got banged up with injuries and we grew impatient and lacked discipline in the way we played and it showed in our results.

“We’ve definitely evolved a fair bit and improved a lot but we’re not the finished article. It’s good to see that we’re all pretty much on the same page and we have a good feeling in the camp. I still think we’ve a little bit to prove, more to ourselves if anything, in the next few games.

The Head Coach also gave an injury update on his squad, including the news that Leroy Cudjoe is facing a period on the sideline with a knee injury:

“Leroy’s knee is getting to a stage where I don’t know if he’ll play again this season. He’s seeing a consultant down in London today and we’ll find out more from that.

“He’s has been battling a knee injury all year because he’s not been able to be at his best and he’s carried the team even when he’s not been 100%. We’ve got to a stage where we need to do something about it and if he does need surgery then we’ll get that done immediately but if not then he’ll start a rehabilitation plan to get him back.

“It’s got to a stage where he doesn’t think he can play at the level. He’s played at less than 100% for a long time and I think he’s fed up of it so hopefully we get to the bottom of it so we get the Leroy back that we know.

“Apart from that, we’re pretty much the same. Dale Ferguson withdrew late last week with the impending birth of his third child which was understandable so he’s back in the mix for inclusion.”

Stone also spoke about the recent departure of Sam Rapira, wishing him the best for the future:

“Losing a bloke like Sam is disappointing but you’ve got to make some decisions on what’s going to be best for your team in the future. He’s been a real great servant for us and hasn’t missed many games. He’s been a real leader and last year he started most games, he’s been terrific for us around the place and we wish him well.”

“We’re going to miss him. He’s been a good mentor for a host of our younger forwards and they’ve all benefitted from him. He’s actually a lot more skilful than what he gets praised for. He’s tough, not a big man for a front rower, but he knows how to use his body really well. He’s been a positive influence, a good pro and does his job well. He’s impeccable in his preparation and a real example for the young blokes.”






Heikki Kovalainen





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