Leeds Rhinos v Huddersfield Giants: Woolford expects toughest of challenges

Simon Woolford.
Simon Woolford.
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NEW HUDDERSFIELD Giants boss Simon Woolford is expecting a baptism of fire at Leeds Rhinos tonight.

The Australian took charge for the first time when Giants were beaten 20-6 by Catalans Dragons in a Ladbrokes Challenge Cup quarter-final eight days ago. Today is his Betfred Super League debut and he admitted visiting Emerald Headingley is a tough challenge.

They like to throw the footy around and they’ve got some key players in their team we’re going to have to make sure we do a job on.

Huddersfield Giants coach Simon Woolford

“They’ve obviously got some injuries at the moment too, they’ve got some key players out, but they are a dangerous team,” he said of Leeds.

“They like to throw the footy around and they’ve got some key players in their team we’re going to have to make sure we do a job on.

“Their back-three are quite strong coming out of yardage so we’re going to have to make sure we defend those guys really well.

“If we do that and we get a little bit more field position than we did last week, hopefully we can score more points.

“We are going to have to be a lot better than we were last week.”

Woolford, pictured above, admitted it will take time to get his ideas across.

“We changed a few things last week and we probably didn’t play as well with the footy as we would liked,” he reflected. “It is a little bit of a case of some short-term pain versus long-term gain.

“We are doing some really good things at training, we just need to execute them under game pressure and a game scenario.

“We will keep working with it and we’ll see some gradual improvement. Our effort last week was good, we just had to do too much defence.

“To make 130 more tackles and only let two tries in was a fantastic effort from the guys.

“We need to bottle that and keep it and make sure we execute a bit better when we’ve got the footy.”