Lessons learned for Fax as strong Huddersfield side cruise to pre-season win

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Halifax coach Simon Grix reflected on some ‘good lessons’ after his team were beaten 42-6 in their second warm up fixture against Huddersfield at the John Smith’s Stadium.

With NRL Grand Finalist Aidan Sezer pulling the strings at half back, the Giants blitzed Fax in the opening half hour, penning them inside their own half and opening up a match winning 24-0 lead.

The contest was more even from that point, with Fax winger Jodie Broughton scoring on debut against his former club after the break, leaving Grix to reflect on what his side could have done better.

“The physical differences are there to see whenever a Championship team plays a Super League team, for the most part,” said Grix, whose team had beaten a young Hull FC selection a week earlier.

“In that first 40 minutes, we got a good lesson in ball control.

“They won the energy battle and we probably weren’t the smartest when we got tired.

“We got a little bit rattled by fatigue and the amount of time we spent in our end of the field, losing our shape a little bit at a time when it’s really important that you keep it.

“The speed of the ruck was too quick and when it looks too quick from the sideline it looks even quicker when you’re defending on those edges and they’re coming at you.

“When we did eventually get down their end, we did trouble them, which was ridiculous really because we were tired, but overall our ball control just wasn’t good enough.

“I’m not too disheartened by it, we got a good lesson in some of the things we know we need to do better.

“None of the players have said anything outwardly, but I think everyone was quite happy with last week and this is a nice little reminder that, actually, we still have quite a bit that we need to do.”

With Fax and the Giants having signed up to a dual-registration partnership in 2020, Grix was in the unusual position of not only assessing his own players, but also getting an up-close look at some of the talent that might be available to him over the coming months.

“For us, Shaun Robinson showed some energy when he came on, Kevin Larroyer put in a good shift for us and so did Elliot Morris,” said Grix, who was without back rowers Ed Barber (knee) and Matt Garside (illness).

“I felt a bit for Jodie because we were on the back foot so we didn’t get to see his qualities today, despite the try.

“Huddersfield were very good, very professional, and I was quite impressed by them.

“They were smart and Sezer was good, but most half backs are good when they’ve got that much time and space.

“Overall, I think it showed the depth they have at their disposal.

“They have some talent there and those younger players are improving all the time.”