BOSS Richard Marshall felt a 62-0 pre-season defeat at Super League Wakefield Trinity was a tough, but valuable, experience for his young Halifax team.
Halifax conceded 11 tries and Marshall said: “Wakefield had a strong team out and that was great for us, it was a good challenge for our young squad.
“We couldn’t combat their speed and probably skill. I thought the skill level of Wakefield was very good and their pace caught up with us.”
Fax were punished for a series of handling errors and Marshall admitted that was an area of concern.
“There’s probably a spill over from last year, but our defence could combat that in the Championship,” he added.
“Against a Super League team you get absolutely punished and we did. I am sure [Trinity coach] Chris Chester will be happy with his team’s performance, but I am certainly not happy with Halifax’s performance.
“Even in a trial game with a young team we need to be better than that. When you put a shirt on you’ve got to put 100 per cent in and we were a bit battered there.”
Marshall - who lost winger Ben Heaton and second-row Zak Dewhirst to knocks picked up during the game - is confident Halifax will improve as senior players return, though he warned it could take time for them to find their feet once the season begins.
He said: “If we could have put a stronger team out I would, but there’s still a fall out from last year, making the middle-eights.
“We’ve still got some lads out with injuries as a result of that, but that’s another year - it is a different challenge this year.
“The Championship will be even tougher. We wanted to play against a strong Wakefield team, but we wanted to perform a lot better than that.
“It is a good learning curve for the young kids. You have got to make those mistakes to improve, but performance-wise there were some bright sparks in there.
“Brandon Moore has improved from last year and he’s going to be really good for us. We have probably got eight or 10 players to come into that team and we’ve got a couple from [dual-registration partners] Castleford as well.
“That won’t be our starting team at the start of the season, but I am saying to the young lads ‘put your hands up to be in that team’.
“If they are playing well they are forcing my hand to pick them. On that performance there’s probably only a couple who’ve done that.”