We owe them one, says Fax boss ahead of Toulouse clash

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Boss Simon Grix believes Halifax ‘owe’ Sunday’s high-flying Championship visitors Toulouse after their disastrous trip to the south of France at Easter.

Fax, who had let Bradford out of jail at the Shay on Good Friday, were hammered 56-4 in a shambolic Easter Monday loss that triggered the exit of coach Richard Marshall, who left the club later that week.

And Grix, who takes his side into the game on the back of last weekend’s 26-2 Challenge Cup semi final loss to St Helens, is keen to set the record straight against the competition’s third-placed team (3.0).

“Look, they’re a good side, they’re up at that end of the table for a reason,” said Grix.

“But by my reckoning, we owe them one; for Rich and for ourselves as a group.

“There’s no way they are 50 points better than us, but they were that day because we were well below the standards we set ourselves.

“I expect us to be confident and to play well; if we’re not confident after last week’s game, then we never will be.

“If we play with the same desire and urgency we did last week, and add a bit of polish with the ball, we won’t be too far away.”

Grix expects back rower Chester Butler to miss the game with a shoulder injury sustained against Saints, although his absence has partly been offset by the return of young winger Conor McGrath, who has spent the last month on loan at Dewsbury.

“I’m not expecting to make many changes,” said Grix, who admitted he was trying to balance the need to win games with giving opportunities to players like McGrath and young full back Reece Chapman-Smith with a view to 2020.

“I think everyone who played last weekend deserves to play again unless they’re injured.

“Conor is back with us, and while I’m not sure he’ll play this week, he will get a chance in the next month, as will Reece.

“We want them to have opportunities, but we also want to field our strongest team and, at the moment, that’s probably the team that played last weekend.”