Ian Watson provides further details on Jermaine McGillvary injury

Josh McAllister
Jermaine McGillvary, Ian Watson, News Images.

Photo by Mark Cosgrove/News Images.

Huddersfield head coach Ian Watson has provided a full update on winger Jermaine McGillvary, who has dropped out of his 21-man squad for their home game with Castleford.

McGillvary, 34, has featured in both the side’s games so far this season. However, he misses out for Friday’s fixture due to a hamstring injury.

“He’s has got a little bit of a tweak on his hamstring again,” Watson explained.

“He comes out, and it should only be a short one to be fair.

“It’s nothing major, he just felt it tighten up in the game last week. He’s not run at all with us this week, so he’s not available to play.

“We don’t know how long that will be, but it’s nothing major. It’s more of a tightening more than anything else.”

Watson is not short of options to replace the former England international, with the likes of Innes Senior and Jake Bibby waiting in the wings for their shot.

“We’ve got loads,” Watson said in response to options. “Ash Golding, Innes Senior, Jake Bibby, flip a centre and push Leroy over to the right edge.

“We’ve got quite a few options. We’ve had a look at how we’re going to set that up during the week, and we’re pretty happy with the way we’ve gone.

“There will probably also be a change in the middle, a little bit of a tweak. But we’ll outline that fully tomorrow to the team when we announce the full team. But we wanted to make sure where we were with all the players first.”

Ian Watson provides Russell latest

Oliver Russell has been named in both the 21-man squads so far this season against Warrington and Wakefield respectively. But he is yet to make a first-team appearance this year.

Instead, the 24-year-old was a part of a star-studded reserves squad that defeated Wakefield reserves 66-4 last weekend.

He was named in the halves alongside Jamaica international Kieran Rush. The likes of Harvey Livett, Senior, Jack Ashworth and Harry Rushton also all featured in the win.

Watson confirmed that Russell had picked up a minor injury during pre-season, but is now back to full fitness.

“He’s fully fit now. He had a little bit of a niggle in the pre-season game with Dewsbury,” the head coach explained.

“We looked quite sharp in that and the continuity was pretty good between the spine. There’s been little bits of it where we’ve been hit and miss at the start of the season, but it’s always generally a little bit clunky there.

“But he is fully fit. He’s been named and I thought he was really good for the reserves. His organisation, his control, his kicking game was all really good and looked on the point to be fair and in training this week he’s looked really sharp.”

“Jake Connor trained with the team this week.”

Another player back to full fitness provides more of a selection headache for the 46-year-old coach, with Jake Connor also closing in on his return.

Meanwhile, Kevin Naiqama misses out once again. The Fiji captain is currently recovering from a short-term groin issue.

“Jake Connor trained with the team this week and he looked really sharp,” Watson said. “He opened up our first-team a few times and he let them know about ti as well.

“We’ve got good competition going on now amongst our spine players which is what you want.”

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