Kirby can’t wait to get started
HUDDERSFIELD Giants Under 19s team start their new season with a home test against Wigan Warriors.
They get under way tomorrow at Lockwood Park (7pm) and will be in confident mood having defeated Wakefield Trinity 36-18 away from home in their only pre-season friendly.
Prop forward Jon Luke Kirby scored two tries in the win over Trinity and is looking forward to getting into the competitive campaign.
“I think it’s going to be a tough game but we’re all looking forward to it,” said the England Academy international.
“We’ve had a long pre-season and have done plenty of preparation so we know what to expect.
“It’s always the same when you play Wigan, always a tough and physical match, but we played well in the friendly against Wakefield and it gave us some confidence going into this game, so we’re all looking forward to the match.”
Kirby is hoping that Giants fans will turn out in numbers to give the club’s youngsters backing throughout the season.
“The games are definitely entertaining for the supporters,” said Kirby.
“There’s some great games. Last year there were some really close games with great quality, we would go for 20 minutes without errors and it would be really end-to-end.
“It’s quick, fast and it’s exciting. It’s great to watch and it’s great to play in – so it makes a fantastic game to watch for spectators.”
Kirby was pleased to score two tries against Wakefield, but is more bothered about team wins than how prolific he becomes on the touchdown front.
“It’s always nice getting over, but it’s part of the parcel of the game,” said Kirby.
“It’s mainly how we play together, as a team, and the Wakefield game was really encouraging,
“I thought we played well and there were plenty of positives to take. As always there was a few things that we could work on, but for the first run out together it was very positive and I think we’re looking good.”
On a personal front Kirby will be hoping that he can make the kind of impact that will lead to the chance of a first team run out – working with players who are already helping the youngsters progress.
“I like playing front-row, but I have always been a fan of Sean O’Loughlin, but looking closer to home Ryan Hinchcliffe is a great professional player and I can really relate to some of the things he says.
“If you look at some of the things he does and follow them, you’re not going to go far wrong.
“As for my playing style, I just like to work as hard as I can and get through as much work as I can to help the boys in any way that I can.
“I try to get about and make sure that I do my job to the best of my ability, like winning the ruck and getting some quick plays of the ball, just focusing on what’s my job and making everyone else’s job a lot easier.”
Academy head coach, Luke Robinson, will be taking charge of the Under 19s for his second full season and Kirby is pleased with the team’s development under the former Giants hooker.
“Robbo is brilliant, he’s a great coach for us,” added Kirby.
“I think there’s been loads of improvement over pre-season and the things that Robbo has changed have helped bring us on massively. You can see the individual progression that Robbo has brought about for all the players and I think he’s made a big difference.”
Admission prices for the games at Lockwood Park are £3 for adult Giants season-ticket holders, £3.50 for adults, £2 for concession Giants season-ticket holders, £2.50 for concessions and all Under 16s enter free of charge.