Hull FC v Huddersfield Giants: Eorl Crabtree confident of avoiding another fall

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EORL CRABTREE was part of the last Huddersfield Giants side to suffer relegation but is adamant this current team will not become embroiled in such turmoil.

They head to Hull FC tonight bottom of Super League with just one win from their opening nine games, a real departure from their usual top-four form.

BATTLING: Huddersfield Giants forward Eorl Crabtree showing the determination required to avoid the drop. Picture: Simon Hulme

BATTLING: Huddersfield Giants forward Eorl Crabtree showing the determination required to avoid the drop. Picture: Simon Hulme

As a raw teenager, Crabtree was just emerging with his hometown club when they suffered the drop in 2001, helping them straight back up the following season.

He may be the only player to have experienced that but insisted: “My memory of that time is pretty vague.

“What I do know is that I can’t tap into that knowledge and experience, because this is totally different.

“The team we have now is not the team that was around back then; that team was always going to be beaten and always going to be relegated, but this is a side that can win games.

“It was 14 years ago, I was a young kid, we’d lost 17 matches on the bounce and I got thrown in for five games and was totally out of my depth.

“Whilst it was tough for the club, it was a great breeding ground for me. That was a different era for this club, though, and I’m expecting this side to start winning games.

“I don’t mean to be disrespectful but that team back then didn’t have players like Broughy, Sam Rapira, Joe Wardle and Jermaine (McGillvary) and Leroy (Cudjoe), proper international players.

“They were in a position they couldn’t get out of, but we’re in a position we can change for sure.”

They face a vibrant Hull side, however, who, with stellar NRL signings like Frank Pritchard and Sika Manu, are targeting a fifth successive win.

Former England international Crabtree added: “They should be right in the mix with that team, the quality of players they’ve got and I expect them to push at the top.

“They haven’t done so in previous years because they can’t get those performances out but they’ve been good this year. They will have bad games, though. For us, we need to make sure they have one Friday.

“Our destiny is in our hands, and we’ve got to put people in a position where they feel comfortable. The decisions we’re making at times are atrocious and laughable but we’re just one win away from getting back on track.”