Huddersfield winger Jermaine McGillvary has eyed up tonight’s game in hand with St Helens as a huge opportunity to solidify their position in Super League’s top eight.
A run of four wins from their last six games has seen Huddersfield overtake Catalans in the eight – and all this with a game extra to play too, when they face Justin Holbrook’s Saints this evening.
McGillvary and Huddersfield will move three points clear of the ninth-placed Dragons with a win tonight – and level on points with champions Wigan – and the enormity of the match is not lost on McGillvary.
He said: “It’s a huge opportunity to cement ourselves in the top eight and the better half of the table. St Helens are a class team though; it’s going to be a tough ask but if we put the effort in that we put in on Saturday we’ll run them close or win it for sure.
“I don’t know about anyone else but I look at the table every week. Especially with the form we’ve been in it’s hard not to look because you don’t want to be in those Qualifiers again.”
McGillvary also believes players “knowing their roles” and the return of some key players have helped Rick Stone’s side turn their form around and get their season back on track.
He said: “People are knowing their roles a bit more; the moves we do haven’t changed but people are hitting the right lines and the halves are picking the right pass more often than not. Everyone is gelling really well and combinations are going good.
“It helps having a consistent team and top players on a regular basis. It’s no excuse, the injuries we’ve had, because other teams have had them too.”
And having experienced the drama of the Qualifiers last season, McGillvary is keen to avoid that competition again in 2017.
“We’ll take each week as it comes and try and get the points because the 23-game cut-off is coming up on the horizon soon,” he said. “Hopefully we’re in the mix come the end of that and we’re in the top eight.”