HALIFAX’S dual-registered back rower Jacob Fairbank is eyeing a run into the Co-operative Championship play off places over the second half of the season.
Last weekend’s crucial 14-12 win over Sheffield Eagles lifted Fax to within five points of sixth-placed Widnes.
And while Fax’s next assignment is a tough trip to high-flying Leigh next Thursday, Fairbank believes Fax now have a solid foundation on which to build a play off challenge.
“It’s definitely opened up for us,” said the former Elland amateur.
“We’ve got some tough games coming up but if we can get something out of them then we should be looking good.
“Sheffield was a good win to grind out and good for the confidence.
“I definitely think we can go on a good run over the second half of the season.
“The mood’s picked up, everyone is positive, and we are heading in the right direction.
“Our preparation has been upped, it’s been a lot closer to the sort of things we do at the Giants.
“I felt we had a chance to beat Leigh down here a few weeks ago, so I think we’ve got as good a chance as anyone going over there.”
Fairbank, one of Fax’s best players against the Eagles, could be joined in the side at the LSV by Giants back rower Jon Molloy.
The former Wigan starlet signed a dual-reg deal a fortnight ago, only for a shoulder injury sustained in training to sideline him for the last two games.
“Jon will be an asset for us,” said Fairbank.
“He’s tough, aggressive and a good defender.
“He will certainly give us some strength in depth.
“The last time I spoke to him he was hoping to be fit in a couple of weeks, so he might make the Leigh game.”
THE All-Party Parliamentary Rugby League Group say they have helped safeguard vital funding for the 2013 World Cup.
It was feared the tournament, to be hosted by England and Wales, could lose more than £1million as a result of a Government order to the regional development agencies to slash spending ahead of their abolition.
Rugby Football League chairman Richard Lewis accused the Government of breaking its promises during an address to MPs and members of the House of Lords at the group’s annual dinner in January.
However, the group say they have received confirmation that the North West Development Agency has agreed to honour its financial commitments.
“The 2013 Rugby League World Cup is the first international tournament to take place in Britain after the 2012 London Olympics and provides opportunity to grow the sporting legacy of the Games and to ensure that people of all ages continue to take part in sport throughout the UK,” said group vice-chairman Greg Mulholland, MP for Leeds North West.
“Members of the group, led by those in the north west, have been leading the charge in what has been an excellent demonstration of the group working together.”
CATALAN Dragons have suffered a major injury blow with the loss of full-back or winger Cyril Stacul with a broken ankle.
The 26-year-old France international sustained the break in Sunday’s 30-16 Carnegie Challenge Cup fifth-round defeat at Huddersfield and will be sidelined for at least six weeks.