Huddersfield star responds to Jake Connor’s bold statement

Last week Huddersfield Giants skipper Luke Yates and his team were forced to watch as the rest of Super League start the season but fortunately it allowed them to get a good look at their Round Two opponents Warrington Wolves.

On this, Yates said: “Watching Warrington play so well made everyone a little more excited coming into this week. We had a big session on Friday last week which was pretty much a game to get a good feel of things.”

Huddersfield are gunning for big success in 2023 and key to this will be their new signings and Yates is excited by those they have brought in:

“I think our core group remains, the only spine player we’ve got coming in at the moment is Nathan Peats. Obviously we’ve got Jake Connor coming back in the coming weeks, so the core group is still there. We’ve just added quality with the likes of Kevin Naiqama and Esan Marsters and all the other boys. I don’t think it changes the way we play, it just adds on.”

But a player who was already at the club and is central to the Giants is Chris Hill and Yates paid tribute to Hill: “There’s a few young lads and then Chris Hill the dinosaur leading the way…. He’s unreal, definitely the best front rower I’ve played with. Just the way he gets about his work, you might feel a bit gassed and you see him taking a play two carry and that sort of thing motivates me. I was speaking to Ollie Wilson and it just forces you to go harder when he’s there.

“This is definitely the best squad that I’ve been a part of and played in. Anything lower than last year which was third and the Challenge Cup final will probably be a loss for us.

All of this gives Huddersfield one of the best squads in Super League and recently Jake Connor said that it was the best in Super League.

On these comments, Yates said: “I think we’ve got a good squad yeah but it doesn’t matter unless we’re winning games, It’s all well and good on paper, which we do have a really good squad, but until we start playing games it’s quite hard to say.”

Does this all create pressure on the Giants?

Yates said: “There’s probably no more pressure internally, maybe from the fans because they could see what we were capable of. But internally we’re striving for the same goal. We’ve got a clean slate and are starting a new season. There’s a little bit of pressure because we want to be better than last season but I believe with the work that we’ve done we’re ready to do that.”

“I think we had a big drop off after the Challenge Cup and our execution in attack probably wasn’t up to scratch at the back end of last year. Execution and our goal line attack are probably the big key areas, which we’ve been doing a lot of work on in the pre-season.”

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