SL Preview: Giant task ahead

Huddersfield face a rocky road in 2018.

The Giants started the season in poor form but whatever coach Rick Stone said to his team midway through the season – it worked.

They went on to pick up nine wins in 14 games and finished the regular season in eighth, making the Super 8s, rather than the Qualifiers like in 2016.

And the arrival of full-back Jake Mamo from Newcastle Knights would surely have helped the team.

The 23-year-old made a huge impact at the John Smith’s Stadium, scoring 12 tries in nine games for the club. However, the Giants were dealt a blow when his season was ended early due to a foot injury.

He is back fit and ready now though! If the Giants can keep him and England star Jermaine McGillvary fit, then they have got a chance of getting into the Super 8s again.

From looking at the stats, Huddersfield haven’t got an issue with scoring points – they scored more points than this year’s favourites, St Helens, in 2017.

But they conceded nearly as many points as they scored last year, with a points difference of just 33. If they can toughen their defence up this year, then that would put them in an advantage to get the top-eight finish that they desire.

They haven’t strengthened much though, with just two forwards coming into the club in Adam Walne and Colton Roche while fan favourite Sam Rapira has joined Toulouse.

It’s going to be a testing year for the Giants.

Head Coach: Rick Stone

Assistant Coach: Chris Thorman

Captain: Leroy Cudjoe

Key Man: Jermaine McGillvary

One to Watch: Jake Mamo

Ins: Adam Walne (Salford Red Devils), Colton Roche (Bradford Bulls)

Outs: Harry Woollard (Dewsbury Rams), Sam Rapira (Toulouse Olympique), Jamie Ellis (Castleford Tigers), Nathan Mason (Leigh Centurions – loan), Mikey Wood (Bradford Bulls – loan), Jared Simpson (Dewsbury Rams – loan), Izaac Farrell (Batley Bulldogs – loan), Billy Hayes (Dewsbury Rams), Liam Johnson (Bradford Bulls – loan)

Squad: 1 Jake Mamo, 2 Jermaine McGillvary, 3 Leroy Cudjoe, 4 Jordan Turner, 5 Aaron Murphy, 6 Lee Gaskell, 7 Danny Brough, 8 Sebastine Ikahihifo, 9 Kruise Leeming, 10 Shannon Wakeman, 11 Tom Symonds, 12 Michael Lawrence, 13 Ryan Hinchcliffe, 14 Dale Ferguson, 15 Jordan Rankin, 16 Oliver Roberts, 17 Ukuma Ta’ai, 18 Paul Clough, 19 Daniel Smith, 20 Adam Walne, 21 Adam O’Brien, 22 Alex Mellor, 23 Darnell McIntosh, 24 Tyler Dickinson, 25 Colton Roche, 26 Sam Wood, 27 Matty English, 28 Jared Simpson, 29 Jacob Wardle, 30 Gene Ormsby.

Prediction: 10th

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