Castleford Tigers awarded victory as Jake Wardle demands Huddersfield Giants turn season around

THEY are under fire, sidelined by Covid and bereft of form but Jake Wardle says Huddersfield Giants retain “belief” they can turn their season around.

Huddersfield's Jake Wardle against Wakefield Trinity (Picture: SWPix.com)
Huddersfield's Jake Wardle against Wakefield Trinity (Picture: SWPix.com)

Ian Watson’s struggling side endured their biggest loss of the campaign when falling 50-12 at home to Catalans Dragons last Thursday and a season which offered so much promise has never truly got going.

Centre Wardle produced some positives, making a searing break to set up Ashton Golding’s try and then scoring himself.

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However, with injuries to key players and tonight’s game against Castleford Tigers called off with a positive test in their camp, matters remain difficult.

“Obviously, it does get tough when you are in a bit of a hole,” Wardle told The Yorkshire Post.

“But we are all confident we can pull each other through.

“We have the belief among the squad still.

“Obviously, we’ve got a few injuries, especially to our spine and we didn’t make it easy for ourselves either.

Jake Wardle: Huddersfield Giants centre confident they can turn their season around. (Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

“Playing against Catalans, top of the league and going really well, we made too many errors.

“They are a very good team. The aim for us was just to try and go set-for-set, especially with the squad we had out.

“We had Sam Wood in the halves and I don’t think he’s played there all year.

“We tried keeping it as simple as we could but errors cost us and they are very good with the ball in hand. They punished us.”

Wardle, at least, remains in good shape having missed out on a potential England debut against the Combined Nations All Stars due to his own injury.

“It was the Salford game where I pulled up with my foot,” he explained.

“I had loads of swelling and loads of bruising. The physios just thought it’d be best not to risk anything and they pulled me out (of England) so I didn’t injure anything else.

“I’m not sure if I’d have been picked but it just came at a bad time.

“Luckily it wasn’t anything serious so I can get back playing and try do what I can to ask a few questions before the end of the year.”

Huddersfield called off their game against Castleford on Sunday night, saying they could not safely field a 17-man squad due to a long injury list and another four players unable to play due to Covid reasons.

The West Yorkshire club insisted they would be without nearly 20 players for various reasons and hoped the RFL would allow them to rearrange the fixture.

However, the governing body yesterday confirmed Castleford had been awarded a 24-0 win as Huddersfield did not meet the threshold for postponement of a fixture under the Covid-19 framework, which stipulates a minimum of seven players unavailable for Covid reasons.

An RFL/Super League statement read: “As with Castleford’s withdrawal from their previous scheduled fixture which was awarded 24-0 to St Helens, this failure by Huddersfield to fulfil a fixture will be referred to the RFL’s Compliance Department as Off-Field Misconduct.”

It was the tenth Super League game this season called off due to the pandemic and Giants must now turn their attention to being able to field a side for Sunday’s trip to Wigan Warriors.