CENTRE Steve Tyrer has highlighted the white-hot competition for places as a major factor in Halifax’s early-season success.
Karl Harrison’s side woke up yesterday morning at the top of the Co-operative Championship with a three-from-three record after flogging the 2011 Grand Finalists Sheffield 50-18 at Bramall Lane on Thursday night.
A clutch of players who have been early-season regulars missed the cut for the trip to the Steel City, with prolific wingers Rob Worrincy and Paul White, young stand off Anthony Bowman plus pack trio Sam and Josh Barlow and Joe Chandler all sidelined.
And Tyrer believes the depth of talent currently at Harrison’s disposal played a significant part in giving the visitors a winning edge.
“We turned up to training on Wednesday night and I honestly don’t think anyone would have been able to guess what the team was going to be for Thursday, which is not something you get very often,” said Tyrer.
“Paul White missed out in the end and I don’t think anyone was expecting that.
“He’s been one of our better players all year and he’s done nothing wrong, but that’s the nature of the beast this season.
“The way it’s going, Karl will pick players to win a specific game and it’s working.
“We are knocking hell out of each other in training just to get in the side, and that gives you an edge when you go into games.
“We’ve got two or three players who can play full back, four or five wingers, four or five centres, loads of front rowers, loads of back rowers.
“We’ve got a lot of players getting fit now too, like Ross Divorty and Makali Aizue, and Iain Morrison is getting close to playing again.
“No one is guaranteed a spot.”
Like Harrison, Tyrer pinpointed the visitors’ second-half defensive effort, which saw them repel an Eagles comeback before romping clear in the final 10 mintues, as the key phase of the game.
“I think our defence won it,” said the former Widnes and St Helens back. “They threw a lot at us and we soaked it up and then hit them when they were tired.
“Hopefully it does send out a message to the rest of the comp.
“I think a lot of people fancied Sheffield before the game, but we were confident we had the team to go there and win and we’ve done that.
“We’ve a good mix here; we’ve got some tough players, we’ve got some skilful players and we’ve got some really fit players who’ll just keep going and going. When you’ve got all that variety, plus all the people who didn’t play who could easily have fitted into the side, it’s a good sign.”
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