17th May 2018


Chris Thorman previews the Giants Sunday clash against Wakefield Trinity at the Dacia Magic Weekend

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Chris Thorman spoke to the media about the Giants trip to the Dacia Magic Weekend on Sunday when they take on Wakefield Trinity at 3:15pm.

Thorman began by talking about Giants Head Coach Simon Woolford:

“Simon is still in Australia. Unless his visa comes tomorrow he won’t be here for the Magic Weekend, so we’ve got 24 hours until we know if he’ll be here in time. It is what it is, we’ve been dealing with it pretty well over the past few weeks. We’re in constant communication, we talk everyday and I don’t think between us we sleep that much. He’s still having an influence even from that far away.

“I think all of the staff have really upped their workload. It was our day off yesterday and I think we were in for fourteen hours. I was here at 5:30am doing video preparation on Wakefield and then we were at the Club Partners day, then I did a bit more back at the training centre before going to Leeds Road for an Embed the Pathway session for under 14s until 7:30/8pm last night. I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t love it and I love this Club. I’ll do whatever is needed and I know there is a lot more staff members in this building that feel the same way.”

Thorman is the first Super League coach from Newcastle and is excited about returning to where he grew up:

The Magic Weekend is an enjoyable weekend, I’m a bit biased but St James’ Park is one of the best sports arenas in the north of England. The people are brilliant and really embrace rugby league, hopefully they’ll turn up in record numbers again.

“We’ll definitely talk about Wakefield having a response and changing their squad because they probably will. At the same time, if this group is on it and we do things together defensively, we execute our game plan then I’m confident of another good performance.”

Having welcomed back Jermaine McGillvary from injury against Wakefield last week, Thorman gave an update on the injury front:

“Dale Ferguson is a couple of weeks off. We’re getting much closer with Leroy Cudjoe, he’s been running around the field, which is a great sight to see, he’s probably a week or two away but we’ll take that a day at a time. Ollie Roberts is nearly back to being fully fit. Sam Wood has just picked up a slight ankle knock but in terms of injuries we’re in a much better place. It’s absolutely no coincidence that it coincides with a slight turnaround in form too.

“It’s difficult to change a winning team after winning our last two. We play the same team again in Wakefield but having the option to change things is always nice.

“Shannon Wakeman has been injured with a couple of niggling injuries and what I’ve said to him is that he needs to train consistently in order to be available for selection and he’s sort of trained one, missed one, trained one then missed one and I can’t reward that. People like Matty English train every day. Matty’s consistency in training is reflected in his performances, so that’s where Shannon is at and he’ll join Dewsbury on loan for the next month. Whilst he’s getting over those injuries he’ll play for Dewsbury over the next couple of weeks and I think that’s really important for him because you can only do so much on the training field and he needs to play.

“Colton Roche too. He’s still learning, and he hasn’t played much Super League at all. He trains really well, has a fantastic attitude, but again he needs to play and so will spend the next month on loan at York.

Having secured a place in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup quarter-finals with a 24-14 victory over Wakefield Trinity, Thorman discussed the Cup competition after the Giants were drawn to face Catalans Dragons on Thursday 31st May at the John Smith’s Stadium:

“We’re pretty excited with the Challenge Cup. We spoke after the Wakefield game that we’re two games away from Wembley, let that sink in. These opportunities don’t present themselves very often. With the structure of the cup and the round we came in, if you win three games you’re in a final and it’s nuts. In terms of the draw, you get what you’re given and people will say it’s one of the easier ties but I’m not having that at all. I think Catalans on their day are as good as anyone. You look at the other draws and they’re all tough draws too. We’ll get through our next league games and then we’ll focus on the Challenge Cup.”

Paul Clough, who has featured in every game for the Giants this season, will make his 300th career appearance against Wakefield on Sunday and Thorman praised the forward:

“I’m really pleased for Cloughy. He’s one of those who keep their head down, goes about their business and doesn’t get a lot of acknowledgement but we really appreciate him. His staff and peers really appreciate what he does on a day to day basis, he’s a fantastic professional. To play 300 games is a really great achievement and we acknowledged that this morning with some messages from James Graham and James Roby to name but a few. Those boys think very highly of him. He’ll lead the team out on Sunday and he really deserves it, he’s a great bloke.”





















Heikki Kovalainen




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