FORMER Fax favourite Paul Rowley insists Leigh will take nothing for granted when they host Matt Calland’s side in tomorrow night’s televised Co-operative Championship clash (7.30).
Rowley, who is now head coach Ian Millward’s right hand man at the Leigh Sports Village, said he and the Centurions players were relishing the chance to pit their skills against what he terms one of the top teams in the competition.
And while his Leigh side are setting the pace, Rowley knows that Fax will arrive brimming with confidence and keen to build on their 14-12 win over Sheffield last time out.
“We are expecting a tough game, there is no doubt about that,” said the 36 year old former England international hooker.
“Halifax are always a difficult side to play against and now Brian Noble has gone in there and really upped the ante.
“And that appointment looks to be paying off as they had a good win against Sheffield and seem to have hit a bit of form.”
Rowley said that he wasn’t too surprised that Fax had struggled to make an impact following their Grand Final exploits last year, citing player departures and an unforgiving league as the possible main reasons.
“Halifax did very well last season, but they lost a few good players and that can be difficult to recover from,” added Rowley, who was a mainstay of John Pendlebury’s Super League side in the late 90s.
“Also, this is a tough league and nobody has the right to do well. You have to earn everything you get.”
Leigh are flying at the top of the table and are currently unbeaten - a record Rowley is keen for the side to have preserved come the final hooter tomorrow.
“We have every right to be confident because we are playing well,” said Rowley.
“That does not mean we can become complacent and we treat every game as a new challenge.
“We will be strong and competitive and that is all you can ask for.
“Our lads enjoy playing Halifax because they are a good side in this league.
“They have won trophies which is where we aspire to be.
“On a personal level it is always good to see familiar faces. And the fans are good even though we do have a bit of banter.”