He plans to spoil Si­mon’s big night


STEVE McNA­MARA is de­ter­mined to ruin Si­mon Wool­ford’s full de­but tonight.

Wool­ford, Hud­der­s­field’s new coach, has been work­ing won­ders be­hind the scenes while his visa from Aus­tralia was held up.

Daily and lengthy Skype ses­sions with his new coach­ing staff have helped turn the club’s for­tunes around.

Four wins on the trot – in­clud­ing one at Sal­ford just hours af­ter he flew in on Fri­day – have got the club bounc­ing.


But McNa­mara, the Cata­lans coach, wants to spoil the party when Wool­ford fi­nally makes his home bow in tonight’s Chal­lenge Cup quar­ter-fi­nal.

The French club are also en­joy­ing a rare good run and McNa­mara said: “The group is in a good place.

“We are win­ning and im­prov­ing and now we are look­ing for­ward to a dif­fer­ent chal­lenge in the Chal­lenge Cup.

“We have still got a lot more im­prove­ment in us, but while we have got this men­tal­ity, it will push us a long way.”

Cata­lans have won five of their last six games to lift them off the bot­tom, up to 10th, and to within a point of the top eight.

Wool­ford, who watched on as as­sis­tant Chris Thor­man ran things in the 24-18 win over Sal­ford, will take full charge tonight.

He said: “The Chal­lenge Cup is a mas­sive deal and be­fore I got here I un­der­stood all about the his­tory.

“I have known guys who have played in Eng­land and coached over here, so I un­der­stand it is a big deal.

“It is an im­por­tant game and we want to get into the semi­fi­nals and give our­selves ev­ery chance of get­ting to the fi­nal.

“In the last month, there has been a real shift in the play­ers’ at­ti­tudes and, for­tu­nately, that is show­ing in the re­sults. We are at home, too, so there is no rea­son why we can’t put in another good per­for­mance.”

The Chal­lenge Cup semi­fi­nals will be played as a dou­ble­header at Bolton’s Macron Sta­dium on Sun­day, Au­gust 5. WI­GAN prop Ryan Sut­ton will go to the NRL when his War­riors con­tract ex­pires at the end of the sea­son.

Sut­ton, who is likely to join Canberra, said: “It was a tough de­ci­sion to leave my home town club but I’ve al­ways wanted to try my hand in the NRL.”

HOME AT LAST: Si­mon Wool­ford COM­ING FOR YOU: Steve McNa­mara £13.49 £3.49

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