Ian Watson reveals why Huddersfield Giants are doing it tough

Huddersfield Giants are battling with Leeds Rhinos, Warrington Wolves, Hull FC, Hull KR and Salford Red Devils for a play-off spot but things are tough on Ian Watson’s men.

They are four points behind the play-off places and have lost a key player to a season ending injury.

As they defeated Leeds, Olly Russell played on with a broken hand but is now out for the season as Ian Watson confirmed:

“Yeah, he’s got a broken bone in his second metacarpal it is, so unfortunately that looks like his season’s going to be over for us, which is obviously unfortunate for him and unfortunate for us again. From what the specialists and surgeons have said is it’s a clean break on it so it is what it is at this moment in time.

“Like I say, we’ve had a few issues through this year with the spine, so it’s one to contend with again for us really. It’s upsetting because Rusty’s obviously a good kid and a big part of our future as well, and I think if you saw the way he managed the game in the spell where we’re down to 12 men, it showed how much he’s matured this year really, to be able to control a game like that.”

On a replacement, he said:

“Ideally you’d probably go playmaker for playmaker with Theo (Fages), but obviously Theo’s still not where he needs to be so he won’t feature this week.

“We’ve had a little look at a couple of things, obviously we’ve had a real short week this week so we will be going with the three guys who we we’ve gone with before, which is Will (Pryce), Tui (Lolohea) and Jake Connor.”

He also questioned the short turn arounds for the club:

“Yeah it’s a tough one. We had a short turnaround after the St Helens game, which which was mad really when you think about the Challenge Cup week, why it couldn’t have been played before that.

“We didn’t handle that five days well or should I say we just didn’t handle the following game well; first half we were well in the game and it was in the balance, then second half everything dropped away from us and whether it was a consequence of such a short turnaround I’m not sure; but we tried to do things a little bit better this time around and learn from that experience to try and make players a little bit fresher going into this game.

“It’s obviously another big game for us as well, but yeah I think the five-day turnarounds probably aren’t ideal at this time of the year, especially when you’re running pretty low anyway on numbers.”