Supporters' Association

Examiner Reports: December 2015

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Contents

1st
8th
15th
23rd

1st

On the first day of Christmas the Giants said to me
There is only one Ken Davy.

On the second day of Christmas the Giants said to me
We’ve got the number two winger in the world team.

On the third day of Christmas the Giants said to me
We’ve now finished in the top three for three consecutive years.

On the fourth day of Christmas the Giants said to me
Let’s now fill all four stands at the John Smith’s Stadium.

On the fifth day of Christmas HGSA said to me
That’s the mere cost of membership.

On the sixth day of Christmas the Giants said to the players
Don’t get caught on the sixth tackle.

On the seventh day of Christmas the Giants said to me
There will be 7 teams below us in the Super Eights next year.

On the eighth day of Christmas the Giants said to me
We’re now going to play for a full 80 minutes.

On the ninth day of Christmas the Giants said to me
Get ready for nine month of Super League Rugby.

On the tenth day of February the Giants said to me
Just two more days to our first home game of the season.

On the eleventh day of Christmas HGSA said to me
Come along to our fabulous Reindeer Race Night.

On the twelfth day of Christmas the Giants said to me
Just see where we are in twelve months’ time.

And finally,

On the thirteenth day of Christmas the Rugby League said to me
We’re the greatest game to be played on planet Earth!

NB Both poetic and musical licences are required when attempting to sing this Christmas ditty.

So, wasn’t that the ideal tempter to get you to join in at our Reindeer Race Night on Friday 11th? See http://www.giantssupporters.co.uk/Forms/Reindeer%202015.html or contact Dave Calverley [07887 878 425].

“Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants” can be bought online [http://www.huddersfieldrlheritage.co.uk/Editorial/Shoulders.html] or from David Thorpe, 01484 533378.

 

8th

Away from the rugby pitch, the various supporters groups continue to work together.

The prime example of this was the Legends Annual Dinner where nigh on 150 fans gathered at Greenhead Masonic for a superb evening.

On Thursday evening of this week this co-operation will continue.

The Heritage Group will be holding a book signing at Waterstones, in Kingsgate. It will be joined by various members of the Players Association, including Derek Wroe, Gary Senior, and Ian Van Bellen.

Our two Antipodean signings, Ryan Hinchcliffe and Sam Rapira, will represent the current Giants.

The event will last for one hour, commencing at 7 o’clock.

Our Annual Reindeer Race Night has attracted not just members of the Association, but also Legends and Past Players. [ Visit http://www.giantssupporters.co.uk/Forms/Reindeer%202015.html or contact Dave Calverley, 07887 878 425.]

Thanks are due to Brosters Farm Shop, Lindley Moor, and Magic Rock Brewery, Willow Lane, for their support and sponsorship of this event.

Speaking of Gary Senior, he seems to turn up at every event.

He was present last Saturday, along with Tony Johnson, Derek Wroe, Ken Boothroyd, and Rod Wright, at Lindley Swifts.

The Players Association presented the amateur club with a cheque for £500 for new equipment, and to help develop the Junior sections across all age groups, Lindley have also started a new Women’s Rugby League Team.

Stockings fillers:

We are down to the rump of ‘Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants’. For those who don’t know, it is the history of the club in never-before printed articles.

Amazingly, we still have a few packs of Players Cards. One pack, ‘Fartown Giants’ consists of 50 of the best Rugby League players from the Huddersfield district, nurtured by local amateur clubs.

Set 1 is 0’Huddersfield Greats’. 50 players who have donned the Claret & Gold, including the 21 players selected for Huddersfield’s RL Hall of Fame by the Players’ Association.

‘Huddersfield In World War 1’, again, new material relating how the town of Huddersfield and its inhabitants coped in those torrid times.

The Huddersfield Players Association’s 2016 calendar. This really is a must-have for any Fartown fan. It is in full colour. A separate page is assigned for each month, with space for daily reminders.

[A personal plea: please buy ‘Huddersfield In World War 1’. I have a few thousand of the blooming things stored in my garage and I’m getting earache from my better half! Alternatively if you can store them for us, please get in touch.]

The Heritage publications can be bought online [http://www.huddersfieldrlheritage.co.uk/Editorial/Shoulders.html] or from David Thorpe [01484 533378].

17th

After the sojourn of 2014, the Reindeer Race Night returned with a bang last Friday.

[Last year, if you remember, Santa had to cancel the event due to Donna, Cupid, Blitzen, and Rudolph each having a dose of the flu.]

Whilst his reindeer turned up this year, Santa himself was, unfortunately, absent – there had been slight mishap in the toy factory.

[Happy the Elf, despite being told not to, had worn his tunic which had bells on the sleeves. The bells got caught in the parcelling machine and Happy isn’t any more. The Health and Safety team are currently investigating. We’ll keep you informed should Santa be prosecuted before the big event.]

For the grand-final race, one Tony Johnson was the match officiator. His job was to roll the dice which made the reindeer run. Guess whose reindeer won!

Thanks are due to your committee for all the work they put into the planning and running of the event. And thanks to David and his team at Turnbridge WMC for continuing to be such hospitable hosts.

And a special mention to the club’s match day announcer, Tim.

In a moment of weakness [madness?] many months ago, he agreed to be the race commentator and auctioneer.

Once his trepidation and fear faded, he either had a great time, or he is a very good actor.

Thanks Tim.

Thursday night’s book signing at Waterstones was also a tremendous success with fans queuing out of the door wanting the autographs of new signings Ryan Hinchliffe and Sam Rapira.

What extremely nice and pleasant guys these two are. Let’s hope they aren’t like that on the pitch!

To compliment this pair were old favourites [take that any way you want!] Ian Van Bellen, Derek Wroe, and Gary Senior. [Gary was also at the race night, but I daren’t say that because he gets upset when his name is continually in the paper.]

What a pack those five would make if they were playing together now!

Christmas stocking fillers can be bought online [http://www.huddersfieldrlheritage.co.uk/Editorial/Shoulders.html] or from David Thorpe [01484 533378].

And HGSA news is online at www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk. Make a special note that Jenna Brough will be telling of her exploits up Kilimanjaro on January 5th and the Fans Forum on the 28th January.


24th

Summer rugby will be back amongst us next month with the Giants playing a series of friendlies.

But what was it like playing in winter? And in wartime?

The following is an extract from the Heritage Group’s ‘Huddersfield In World War 1’.

Huddersfield NURFC limped on into 1916-17. There were now fewer fixtures requiring long railway journeys, but fulfilling them became an increasing struggle. On 23 September they were still looking for players ten minutes before kick-off at Batley and predictably lost, 16-7. The HDE asked supporters to be charitably:

“Remember that a full hard week's work - in some cases long hours of exhausting overtime - does not conduce to fast movements on a football field,  when personal inclination must often turn to rest rather than vigorous football. The pace of football today is a war-time pace, and, in justice to our munition players everywhere, don't let us overlook this fact.”

Seeking further solace after a fifth straight defeat, the HDE commented:

“We have seen the days when Huddersfield could win, like sportsmen, and it was even more pleasing to see that they could take their gruel, and it was a stiff dose, with a smiling face and unflagging spirit.

“I am sure every Huddersfield man on the ground would be delighted with the way the wearers of the claret and gold accepted such an unprecedented situation.”

Reinforced by a few rugby-playing guards stationed on the east coast, they finally won at the sixth time of asking, 28-2 at York. November's match at Bramley started late owing to delays on the railway, and the 'Northern Union fiasco' of 25 November 1916 showed a game on its knees.

“The players were "all mixed up" so that many clubs had foreign help, three games were abandoned because of the weather, in one match only fifty three minutes' play took place, in another the players "went in" because of the rain - an unheard of thing in serious football - and refused to come out again; whilst still another match [Bramley v Hunslet] ended in a free fight.”

Huddersfield's match at Hull KR started 15 minutes late and ended 22 minutes early as it was 'too dark to continue.' Seven days later Huddersfield's return match against York kicked off with only 19 of the requisite 26 players on the park, of whom York had eight.

Compounding the problems, Christmas 1916 brought a 50% increase in passenger rail fares and, to prioritise fuel for transportation of troops, horses, munitions and other supplies for the front, a reduced service.

“As the players are scattered all over the country in munitions, mining, engineering, and other work, heavy travelling expenses are entailed every week.”

The final straw for Huddersfield came at Wigan in April 1917. The team's 17-0 defeat was secondary to the presence of seven guest players from Leigh and only three Huddersfield players in 'the most strangely constituted ever Huddersfield team.'

 

For post-Christmas exercise, join HGSA next Wednesday, 30th December, on the Wagstaff Trail. Meet in the Co-op car park in Holmfirth at 11:00 am.

Jenna Brough will be telling of her exploits up Kilimanjaro on January 5th and the Fans Forum on the 28th January. All HGSA news is online at www.GiantsSupporters.co.uk.

Reproduced by kind permission of the Huddersfield Examiner
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