Thursday, 18 May 2017

Sunday's Coming: Halifax

A big fan of Halifax: Theresa May talks the Tory faithful
through her programme collection
The world took a weird turn this week when the Tory party chose Halifax as THE perfect place to launch its manifesto ahead of the General Election. You’d probably pin down Halifax as a Yorkshire bastion of blue-collar social conscience - but it’s not quite as clean cut. Having last returned a Tory in 1983 Halifax has since has been a Labour seat - but it’s now a frontline marginal: Labour candidate Holly Lynch this time defendng a majority of just 428.

So having had Theresa May in town avoiding a baying crowd, it’s Hornets’ turn to front-up in ‘Fax on Sunday, to try and put a cross in a very important box as Hornets seek to gain momentum ahead of the Summer Bash. (see what we did there?)

After a stop-start month in which Hornets showed signs of breaking our run of frustrating defeats, but only came frustratingly close, Alan Kilshaw’s side makes the short trip to the Shay in search of that elusive win.

Halifax come into sunday’s game having been hoofed out of the Challenge Cup, a going down 24-12 at Featherstone. League-wise, Halifax sit in the 5th on points difference - jointly on 18 points with London and Toulouse, a three club peloton in pursuit of Fev and Dull KR.

Ahead of Sunday’s game, Halifax have signed Brandon Douglas - a 20 year-old Cas Tigers prop, who’d been on dual reg at Dewsbury - for the remainder of the season. Also in the frame to feature in Richard Marshall’s side at the weekend are Salford dual reg. pair Dan Murray and Adam Walne.

Murray has already been farmed out to both Bradford and Warrington this term, Walne has previously done DR stints with Workington and Barrow. Fax also have second row Simon Grix back in contention for Sunday.

Having identified ‘a lack of discipline’ as the major contributory factor in his side’s cup loss at Featherstone, Marshall knows that a similar performance could open the door for Hornets. Speraking in the Halifax Courier this week he said: “Rochdale have been close to a lot of teams without quite getting results, but they play a fast, expansive game and they can rattle teams.”

Hornets will be looking for an improvement on February’s 20-6 reverse, though the stats sit in Fax’ favour: Halifax winning the last six encounters comfortably, scoring 24 tries to 8 in the process. Wearing our glass-half-full head, it loioks like we’re due for one - and you’d hate to miss it if you did.

Early indications are that the Hornets supporters will be getting together somewhere in the main stand, rather than see nowt behind the posts. So get yourself over, make some noise and give the lads a vital boost.