Gi­ants’ tro­phies bid is al­ready un­der way

Huddersfield Daily Examiner - - FRONT PAGE -

MATTY English be­lieves Huddersfield Gi­ants’ bid for sil­ver­ware in 2019 starts this week.

The 20-year-old joined the rest of the squad for pre-sea­son train­ing on Mon­day - and the young prop ad­mits they are al­ready be­ing put through their paces.

“Pre-sea­son is al­ways go­ing to be tough,” English said. “We’re only a few days in and it’s been pretty hard so far, but I’m look­ing for­ward to get­ting back out on the field and build­ing on what I achieved this year.”

And he achieved a lot, mak­ing 14 ap­pear­ances and scor­ing his first try for the club in the 24-14 win over Wake­field in the Chal­lenge Cup. And he capped it off by sign­ing a new four-year deal which ties him to the club un­til at least 2022.

The num­ber of games he played this year came as a sur­prise, but hav­ing had a taste of it, English can’t wait to add to his ap­pear­ances next sea­son. I didn’t ex­pect to play so many games at the start of last year so, ob­vi­ously, I was de­lighted and my fam­ily were buzzing,” he told gi­antsrl. com

“Hope­fully, I can make even more ap­pear­ances this year and have a big im­pact on the team.”

The Eng­land Acad­emy in­ter­na­tional, who turns 21 next week, ad­mits the Gi­ants have big am­bi­tions for 2019, which has al­ready been shown by the sign­ings of Matthew Fraw­ley and Akuila Uate from the NRL.

“We must start well this year be­cause we want to be in the big games at the end of the sea­son,” said English.

“We want to win some­thing and we’ve set clear goals, so we’re go­ing to try our hard­est to work to­wards them.”

The Gi­ants found out this week they will start next sea­son’s cam­paign at home to Sal­ford Red Devils on Fe­bru­ary 1. And English has urged Huddersfield fans to get be­hind the club for what he be­lieves will be an ex­cit­ing cam­paign.

“Hope­fully we can get a big home crowd be­hind us and be­gin the sea­son with a win,” he said.

“We’ve got a great sta­dium and fa­cil­i­ties and I think it’s the best value in Su­per League.

“I’m re­ally look­ing for­ward to see­ing plenty of peo­ple there, and if we can cre­ate a good at­mos­phere it will re­ally help to get the boys go­ing.

“The fans can ex­pect a big start this sea­son. We’re go­ing to bring a more ex­cit­ing, free-flow­ing brand of rugby with plenty of en­ergy in de­fence.”

FOR more ticket in­for­ma­tion or to or­der a sea­son ticket, visit gi­antsrl. ENG­LAND winger Tom Makin­son is a de­served win­ner of the 2018 Golden Boot, says New Zealand cap­tain Dallin Watene-Zelez­niak.

The Ki­wis full-back was on the Rugby League In­ter­na­tional Fed­er­a­tion’s four-man short-list for the pres­ti­gious award af­ter lead­ing his coun­try to a 26-24 vic­tory over Aus­tralia in Oc­to­ber.

Aus­tralia full-back James Tedesco and Eng­land sec­ondrower El­liott White­head were the other men in con­tention but Watene-Zelez­niak had no com­plaints about the award go­ing to the St He­lens player.

“He de­serves it, he’s an awe­some player,” he said.

“I’m happy with my nom­i­na­tion, I’ve just got to keep go­ing.

“It’s been one of my bet­ter se­ries but I’ve still got a long way to go and, if any­thing, it makes me hun­grier.”

New Zealand will be aim­ing to avoid a fourth suc­ces­sive de­feat to Eng­land and a se­ries white­wash at El­land Road on Sun­day af­ter fin­ish­ing on the wrong end of two fierce­ly­con­tested Tests in Hull and Liver­pool.

“They have been good for the game,” Watene-Zelez­niak said.

“They have been tough games, prob­a­bly a cou­ple of the tough­est games I’ve played in my ca­reer.

“It’s good for the game but not so much for the body, and it will be an­other tough game this week.”

Ki­wis coach Michael Maguire will need to make at least one change af­ter los­ing winger Jor­dan Ra­pana with a dis­lo­cated shoul­der in the 20-14 de­feat at An­field last Sun­day.

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