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Huddersfield Giants v Catalans Dragons: Picture clearer for Jordan Turner in new role

Huddersfield Giants' Jordan Turner.  Picture: Bruce Rollinson
Huddersfield Giants' Jordan Turner. Picture: Bruce Rollinson
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AFTER enjoying a “lightbulb” moment in-form Jordan Turner hopes Huddersfield Giants head coach Simon Woolford will now make his positional switch to stand-off a permanent move.

The former Hull FC star, who won the 2014 Grand Final with St Helens at loose forward, had predominantly played centre since his switch from Canberra Raiders 12 months ago.

However, before even arriving in the UK, new Australian chief Woolford instructed Giants’ coaching staff to play him at six and the results have helped revitalise their season.

Since Turner shifted position they have won four successive league games to move from bottom to eighth.

The only defeat during that spell was a Challenge Cup quarter-final loss against Catalans Dragons, opponents who visit the John Smith’s Stadium again tonight in a crucial contest as each club seeks to avoid the Qualifiers.

“I have thoroughly been enjoying it,” admitted 29-year-old Turner. “It’s no coincidence that I’ve played well since I moved there; I feel it’s my natural position and, as a kid, I always played in the halves.

Huddersfield Giants' head coach, Simon Woolford.' Picture: Bruce Rollinson.

Huddersfield Giants' head coach, Simon Woolford.' Picture: Bruce Rollinson.

“I’d like to think I’m pushing my name forward for Simon to play me in that role now for a few years to come.

“I didn’t see it coming as I didn’t know what his plans were when he took over. But I knew he was working under Nathan Brown at Newcastle Knights and he knows a lot about my game.

“I think he might have had a bit of an influence on Simon’s decision and as soon as the coaching staff told me it was like a lightbulb came on; I was really excited and people can see I love playing there.”

The positional switch saw previous stand-off Jordan Rankin move to full-back, which has also worked well, with Jake Mamo replacing Turner at centre, although he has since been injured.

It’s no coincidence that I’ve played well since I moved there; I feel it’s my natural position and, as a kid, I always played in the halves.

Jordan Turner

However, Catalans have also turned their own campaign around to win their last five fixtures and move up to ninth just a point behind the West Yorkshire club with a game in hand.

Turner, who helped Giants win at champions Leeds Rhinos a week ago, admitted: “It’s a real four-pointer with the Super 8s just around the corner.”

“We’ve six rounds left and need to make sure we’re not in those Middle Eights.

“We owe it to our fans as well to put in a better performance than when we lost (20-6) here at home to them in the Cup. That was bitterly disappointing.

“We had a real aim of taking that next step and getting to within 80 minutes of Wembley.

“But we’ve learned from that and need to make sure we do the job come Friday.”