By Richard Sykes

Huddersfield RUFC director of rugby Neil Ryan wants his players to “right some wrongs” in the basement battle with Preston Grasshoppers.

Field are bottom of National 2 North and Hoppers are just above them. The teams have just three wins between them all season.

The bottom two clash at Lockwood Park on Saturday November 11 (2.00) with Huddersfield on the back of a run of six successive defeats.

Last Saturday Huddersfield suffered a heavy defeat away at Fylde after a performance that Ryan described as “defensively shocking.”

Looking back, Ryan said: “The first half was probably the poorest we have played all season and the game was technically over at half-time.

“There were some home truths spoken during the interval and the lads performed better in the second half.

“They were really disappointed after the game and are looking forward to righting some of the wrongs against Hoppers.”

Ryan is under no illusions about the threat that Hoppers will pose and added: “They are playing some good rugby and, even though they have only won twice, they have performed well against teams higher up the league.

“Last Saturday they were very unlucky not to turn Sheffield Tigers over at Lightfoot Green. A last minute converted try by Tigers robbed them of what would have been their first home win. We are in for tough game and will need to be at our best to win it.”

Huddersfield will be without the services of skipper Ed Barber who was red carded late in the game at Fylde. The strong running centre has been a regular try scorer and will be missed.

Full-back Kian Stewart is another absentee. He picked up an ankle injury during the two-week lay-off that followed Huddersfield’s last home game on October 14. The pacy back three man is another of the team’s potential match winners and was last season’s joint top try scorer.

In their last two games Huddersfield have made a rod for their own back by conceding tries through basic mistakes and defensive lapses leaving themselves playing catch up rugby.

In both they created opportunities but fell one try short of picking up a try scoring bonus point.

Their last home game was against Sheffield Tigers and the team took to the field with high hopes.

Ryan said: “On another day we could have beaten Tigers. We started slowly, giving them too much respect and too many opportunities. You simply cannot afford to do that at this level.”

In all their games this season Huddersfield have produced periods of positive attacking rugby and have looked good with ball in hand through the phases.

They will be hoping to sustain that sort of quality for lengthier spells and put points on the board when their chances arise.

They must also ensure that they don’t gift their opposition easy scores. That fault has proved their downfall in recent games.

Main image by: Ray Morris