EMBARRASSED Ryan Hinchcliffe says it is time for players “to take responsibility” at beleaguered Huddersfield Giants.
They visit Warrington tonight without a win since March 9 – ironically the last time Warrington lost – and following a 60-4 defeat at St Helens that the Australian labelled “unacceptable”.
Still awaiting a new head coach after Rick Stone’s sacking last month, Huddersfield seem to be sleepwalking to the Qualifiers for a second time in three years.
The sobering defeat at leaders Saints should, at least, act as some sort of motivation for this evening’s difficult fixture.
Former Melbourne Storm loose forward Hinchcliffe insisted: “I think it has to. I don’t think I’ve ever played in a game where I’ve had 60 points scored against me. That’s hard to take, very embarrassing. If it’s not the kick-up the backside needed to think, ‘maybe I need to make changes, maybe look at my preparation and have a good hard look at myself’ then I don’t know what is.
“We’ll definitely expect a response from everyone. We’ve had some soul-searching.”
In his third season after moving from the NRL, Hinchcliffe has encountered plenty of tough times at the West Yorkshire club.
But Giants still managed to sneak into the top eight last year and he maintained their current situation – just two wins from 12 games – is not terminal.
Hinchcliffe, 33, said: “We only have to look at last year as an example; we’re in a similar position as we were then.
“But we’re not holding our hat on that in any way as we do need to start winning some games.
“It’s an old cliché, but if we train well and prepare well we give ourselves a chance of putting some results together as we start bringing some players back in (from injury). Warrington are a good side. They’ve a lot of points in them but, with 60 points put on us last week, defence is our priority.”
Hinchcliffe, out of contract at the end of the season, has not made a decision on his future.
He said: “There’s been a lot going on. I don’t want to make any decisions when probably not in the best mental state. My main focus is getting back to winning games, enjoying my footy again. I’ll make a decision when we start doing that. I’m confident we will.”