Huddersfield Giants coach confirms injury blow following Challenge Cup semi-final defeat

Ben Olawumi
Ian Watson

Huddersfield Giants head coach Ian Watson speaks to the BBC prior to their Challenge Cup semi-final against Warrington Wolves

Huddersfield Giants head coach Ian Watson has confirmed that Adam Swift was withdrawn at half-time during their Challenge Cup semi-final defeat against Warrington Wolves due to a recurrence of a groin injury.

Swift missed the Giants’ home defeat to Wigan Warriors in Super League last weekend having been crowned Super League’s Player of the Month for April just a few days earlier.

The winger had picked up the groin issue the week prior as Watson’s side were beaten at the John Smith’s Stadium by Salford Red Devils.

He marked his return with a try in the first half on his return in Sunday’s semi-final, and was unfortunate not to grab a second, denied by a last-gasp tackle, but was withdrawn at half-time and didn’t return to the field.

Huddersfield Giants coach confirms injury blow following Challenge Cup semi-final defeat

With Warrington already 22-4 up come the start of the second half, the Wolves continued to dominate and ended up comfortable 46-10 winners, sealing their first trip to Wembley since 2019.

Huddersfield, who lost out to Wigan Warriors in the 2022 Challenge Cup final played at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, have waited since 2009 for a game under the arch.

That wait will now go on at least another year, but as Watson confirmed post-match, they may have bigger worries when it comes to Swift’s injury, a man who has now scored 17 tries in just 13 appearances for the club since his off-season arrival.

Post-match, the Giants boss confirmed: “It’s his groin. We thought he was fine, all the indications suggested that.

“The medical team gave him the all clear, said he’d be fine, and he felt pretty good himself so the fact that he’s not managed to get through the full game is obviously a bit of a worry for us.

“At the moment, we don’t know the extent of that.”

Ian Watson tight-lipped over Jake Connor sin-bin

Towards the end of a last-four clash which became one-sided, frustrations began to boil over from the Giants’ point of view.

Jake Connor was involved on two occasions, avoiding any further punishment for the first having sparked a mass melee in the in-goal area, before being sin-binned for a shove on Sam Powell having completed a tackle on the Wire hooker.

It’s far from the first time Connor has been embroiled in moments like that, costing his side dearly only a few weeks ago at the same venue as his complaining to the referee allowed St Helens to sneak over for a try during a Super League clash which the Red V went on to win 13-12.

Asked about Connor and his sin-binning, Watson remained tight-lipped, but did suggest that words would be had with the full-back.

He affirmed: “I think I’ll speak to Jake about that first before I comment in the press or anything else, he deserves that, but we need to get on top of it.”