After two defeats in their opening two Super League games, it is becoming obvious that the planned revolution under new head coach Ian Watson may take some time to materialise.
Saturday’s defeat against Catalans Dragons was particularly frustrating given how Giants handed so much ball to their opponents through a lack of discipline and precision.
Indeed, Ken Davy, the benevolent Giants owner who has invested so much to back Watson, may be glad that he has taken on the Super League chairman’s role for a few months, to keep his mind occupied elsewhere.
Nevertheless, if his side were to lose again at the weekend – and exit the Cup competition at the first hurdle – one of the two main trophies in their aim will already have gone within just three games of the season’s start.
Huddersfield clearly need their playmaker and captain Aidan Sezer back in the fold, the Australian scrum-half who has missed the opening rounds through injury.
Watson, though, says he has had a setback in his recovery and will miss the next couple of weeks, too
Admittedly, Lee Gaskell did impress after being switched from full-back to half-back against Catalans and he came up with most of his side’s best moments, not least wonderful passes for both their tries from Chris McQueen and Sam Wood.
But every time the former St Helens player looked to be getting his side some momentum, they would take a step back with some mindless ill-discipline or poor execution.
Joe Greenwood’s red card for a high tackle on Samisoni Langi in the 76th minute summed matters up. The England second-row will likely face a suspension when the disciplinary panel meets this week which is the last thing Watson needs.
However, the former Salford Red Devils coach – who saw Sam Tomkins terrorise his side at times – remains confident.
“The second half we improved massively,” he said, after Matt Whitley, Ben Garcia and Mike McMeeken tries saw them trail 20-6 at the break.
“The players know that.
“They performed more like a team and won that second half four-nil. If we’d have scored that other try with Sam Wood in the corner it’s a different game.
“But again, it’s small margins; when you’re playing against the best teams you have to be clinical and our discipline let us down in the first half.
“We didn’t give ourselves an opportunity but we will. I know we will. Today was a big lesson.”
Huddersfield Giants: McIntosh; McGillvary, Cudjoe, Jake Wardle, Wood; Gaskell, Cogger; Yates, Cunningham, Gavet, McQueen, Greenwood, Jones. Substitutes: English, Edwards, O’Brien, Lawrence.
Catalans Dragons: S Tomkins; Davies, Langi, Whare, Yaha; Maloney, Drinkwater, Dudson, Da Costa, Bousquet, Whitley, McMeeken, Garcia. Substitutes: Morgue, Seguier, Baitieri, Kasiano.
Referee: Ben Thaler (Wakefield).
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