At the Super League launch Ian Watson confirmed when speaking to Serious About Rugby League that he was planning on naming his strongest possible side against the Dewsbury Rams this week.
This made sense with it being their last game before the Super League season and especially with the Giants waiting to the second week to play because of St Helens’ battle against Penrith Panthers against World Club Challenge.
This led them to a thumping win over the Rams this afternoon but after the game former Castleford Tigers and Wakefield Trinity stand-off Liam Finn expressed an unhappiness as the Dewsbury Rams boss at the team Ian Watson had named.
Speaking on the Rams’ Twitter, the Dewsbury boss said he had not agreed to a game against a Super League calibre side: “Massive challenge for us today. Not really the game we signed up for originally. It’s not what was sold to us in terms of who we would be playing against but you deal with the cards that you are dealt at the time and put your best foot forward and have a go.
“They put out their strongest team barring a few injuries and the challenge was far too big at times which is why we would never have agreed to it, but that’s another story.
“The lads dug in from minute one to minute 80 and had a crack and just showed what they’re about.
“The tries we did concede, there were a lot, but most were real quality plays from top quality players which is a little thing that we said before.
“We have learnt some lessons but that quality highlights some deficiencies in our defence that wouldn’t be found out at our level or at Championship level so from that point of view it was a pretty humbling experience for some of our edge players but I made it clear they were up against top quality players.
“That game is put to bed today, it ended up being a formality and a good hit out from a fitness point of view.”
Despite Finn’s frustration, it is not Huddersfield’s fault. They had a friendly against Bradford Bulls cancelled due to a frozen pitch which meant that they were reluctant to throw their star players in out of the cold against Castleford Tigers last week in a game that the Tigers went full strength and won 48-10.
Thus, this became Watson’s only chance to test his strongest side ahead of the new season, something most sides do before the new season.
Had the Bradford fixture not been cancelled things could have been very different.
Not an ideal situation for either side.