Halifax coach Richard Marshall admitted he probably learnt more from yesterday’s 38-6 Infirmary Cup battering by Huddersfield than the 46-16 win at Hull KR a fortnight ago.
After thumping Rovers at New Craven Park, Marshall’s side were brought back down to earth with a bump against a clinical Giants side boasting a clutch of international talent.
Calderdale junior Joe Wardle led the way with two tries against his hometown club, while Huddersfield playmakers Danny Brough, Luke Robinson, Jamie Ellis and Shaun Lunt caused havoc at times.
“I think we learnt more from that game, definitely,” said Marshall.
“We enjoyed Hull KR, and we put some things into place that worked that day that didn’t quite work today against different opposition.
“Huddersfield shut down our thinking time a lot quicker and made us make decisions we didn’t want to make.
“We won’t be coming up against Huddersfield every week, but we will be coming up against full time teams so there are things we can look at there.”
Marshall was happier with his side after the break as they averted what had looked like a potential rout at 26-6 at half time.
“I was disappointed with the first half; kicking off, the opposition rolling you and scoring and then going and doing it again, I wasn’t happy with that,” said Marshall, highlighting the back to back tries that put Huddersfield out of sight on the half hour.
“I didn’t think we controlled the first couple of tackles in the sets as well as we could have done.
“But they’re very strong, very mobile and they’ve got some outstanding, international class players in the backs and in the forwards.
“That quality told in the first half, but I thought in the second half we got ourselves back into the game a little bit.
“From a coaching point of view, I was a lot happier with the second half, but we still put a lot of ball down, which compounded where we were at.
“On the whole though, we defended a lot better after the break.”
Australian prop Mitch Cahalane took the man of the match honours for the home side after a solid performance, the highlight of which was a crunching first half tackle on opposite number Craig Kopczak.
“Mitch took his time to get into it, but he got better as the game went on and put in a fair stint,” said Marshall, who
“I’m closer to knowing my best 17 now, but I won’t be telling the players just yet.
“What I will say is that it will be picked on form and merit, not reputation.
“We’ve got a couple of injuries to check on too; Miles Greenwood got a bang on his sternum and Scott Murrell needs to have an X ray on his thumb.
“It was a tough game and it did boil over a couple of times.”