Leigh Centurions now have to guard against the adverse aftermath of the glory of competing in the Challenge Cup by accounting for Hunslet Hawks in the bread and butter Cooperative Championship.
The Hawks are Sunday’s visitors to Leigh Sports Village and Centurions Coach, Paul Rowley is hoping that the fans turn out in force again to recreate the type of atmosphere that resounded around the stadium last Friday night.
“It doesn’t matter who you play,” he says. “If you can pack the fans in and play the type of rugby that we are trying to play, then you will get the right type of atmosphere to get a great response from the fans.
“Against Leeds we went out to entertain and not be afraid of playing our own game and it paid off with a couple of tries that so easily could have been two more.
“But without a video referee we were caught out and with Leeds getting a couple of tries perhaps more than we should have let them, the scoreline took on a margin that was in no way reflective of the contest.
“Never-the-less I think the move that put Greg (McNally) through on half time was the move of the game, and if it had come off, what a difference it may have made to the second half.
“But they are a superb side and every one of our players has taken something positive from that experience.”
But now Leigh play the side from the other side of the tracks and if the Rhinos are the City slickers, then the Hawks are certainly the type of side that likes to get in where it hurts and get their hands dirty.
But Leigh need to get their focus on par to that of playing Leeds, Featherstone, Halifax and the rest for Sunday’s clash.
“We don’t want to do a Featherstone and get beat after the exposure of the cup has disappeared,” Paul stressed. “And hopefully we won’t. Leeds was just another game for us and we prepared in exactly the same way that we will prepare for the Hunslet match.
“We will still be without Jimmy Taylor and John Duffy, and Steve Nash copped an injury on Friday that still requires some attention. But we should have Tom Spencer available from Wigan and that is good news for us.
“Hunslet have proved time and again they are tough opposition and you have to dig deep to beat them.
“We played well last week, but that has gone now. Our real chances of silverware are in this competition and that is where we need to keep our sights set.
“I am proud of the way the lads played, although there were a number of areas where we could have tightened up and that is something we will be working on for the game this Sunday.”