Ian Watson aiming to continue Huddersfield Giants progression with latest signings

Happy Huddersfield Giants coach Ian Watson says the club is taking significant steps towards becoming consistent honours challengers.

This year the Giants made both the Challenge Cup Final and, for the first time since 2015, the play-offs.

And Watson, who took Salford to the 2019 Grand Final and the following year’s Challenge Cup showpiece, believes it’s just the start.

While hooker Danny Levi has been released on compassionate grounds, amid a flurry of fresh signings, Huddersfield have brought versatile Jake Connor back to the club from Hull and landed Salford centre or backrower Harvey Livett.

That’s after swapping outgoing centre Jake Wardle for up-and-coming Wigan pair Jack Bibby and Sam Halsall.

Like Connor, 27, and 25-year-old Livett, prop Bibby and threequarter Halsall, both 21, have signed three-year contracts.

So too have previously-announced arrivals Jake Bibby, the ex-Wigan threequarter, and Harry Rushton, the former Canberra Raiders forward.

Meanwhile Kiwi centre Esan Marsters is moving from Gold Coast Titans and versatile back and Fiji captain Kevin Naiqama from Sydney Roosters on two-year deals.

Watson left Salford for Huddersfield as Livett was arriving from Warrington in late 2020.

Speaking after the England Knights international’s move was confirmed, he said: “Having players like Harvey in the team is important in driving the culture and improving the standards across the board.

“We aim to be consistently competing for being at the top of the table and making finals.”

Huddersfield Academy product and Great Britain international Connor left for Hull in 2017 and Watson said: “Jake is a player I have admired from afar, a tough competitor who wants to win at all costs and will drive people to be better and want more.

“Last year we were the fourth-best attack in Super League and hopefully adding Jake into our team can propel us to more points while maintaining our defensive mentality.”

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