WE are getting to the stage of the season when silverware is starting to be handed out.
If I could hand out a trophy for one of rugby league’s good guys, then it would go to Huddersfield Giants’ Leroy Cudjoe.
Sadly, The Yorkshire Post finances do not stretch to cups and medals, so it was great to see the Giants captain has been awarded a 12-month testimonial by the Rugby Football League.
A fierce competitor on the pitch, a true gentleman off it, Cudjoe, 28, has chalked up nearly 300 appearances for the Giants and is in double figures when it comes to England.
He is one of the standout players in Super League, but the club stalwart has remained loyal to Huddersfield despite the lure of the NRL.
I could wax lyrical about his qualities, but do not need to. Just listen to how he is rated by his coach Rick Stone and team-mate Kruise Leeming.
“I think it’s well and truly justified,” praised Stone. “He’s a role model for our place, on and off the field, a great representation of the Huddersfield community, he leads by example on and off the pitch as well.
“He’s got a massive influence and passion for the rugby league grassroots in the local area, with his own coaching that he does in Moldgreen.
“He is 24/7 Claret and Gold and deserves everything he gets.”
Hooker Leeming added: “Cudjoe fully deserves it. He’s a massive inspiration, it shows that when you work hard you can go from an amateur club and work your way up.
“As a Huddersfield lad he’s great to have around and a really good captain.”
The testimonial will start on January 1 and run for 12 months.
Another of the town’s favourite sons, Eorl Crabtree, was last night named in the Huddersfield RL Hall of Fame.
A giant in every sense of the world, just like Cudjoe, Crabtree spent his entire 17-year playing career at Huddersfield, playing 423 games and scoring 79 tries.
Now retired, but working as a Gaints embassador, Crabtree became just the 22nd player – and the first from the Super League era – to enter the hall of fame.
In fact, the last Huddersfield player to be inducted was Ken Senior, who retired in 1979.
“It’s something that doesn’t happen too often as the game has changed over the years,” said Crabtree.
“We’ve been waiting a while for another Hall of Fame entrant but I’m sure we won’t be waiting quite so long for the next.
“In the future, I’d love to see the likes of Jermaine McGillvary, Leroy Cudjoe and Michael Lawrence included.
“These players are going to be around for a while and will hopefully stay with Huddersfield throughout their careers and will join me in the Hall of Fame.”
Crabtree revealed he took inspiration throughout his career from his famous uncle, legendary wrestler Shirley Crabtree, aka Big Daddy.
“I’ve always committed everything and put everything into making sure I did the right thing, not causing problems, trying to be a model professional and I wanted to inspire people,” he said.
“It might seem a bit strange but my uncle is a bit of an inspiration and was always seen as the ‘good guy’ which is what I wanted to be. I feel that I’m being recognised for the things I did and the way of life that I have lead, I’m absolutely over the moon to be in the Hall of Fame.”