Higham refusing to look past Giants

PA Sport
Mickey Higham is not taking anything for granted against Huddersfield
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Mickey Higham is not taking anything for granted against Huddersfield

Warrington hooker Mickey Higham knows from bitter experience not to underestimate dark horses Huddersfield in Sunday's second Carnegie Challenge Cup semi-final.

The Wolves are hot favourites to repeat their 2009 final victory over the Giants, who will enter the tie in wretched Super League form, but Higham vividly remembers how his previous club Wigan came unstuck in similar circumstances five years ago.

"We played at the Halliwell Jones Stadium against Catalans in '07 and were overwhelming favourites but they did a real job on us," he said. "It was one of those days when nothing went right."

He continuted: "We're probably as big a favourite as Wigan were then, with Huddersfield's form at the moment. League-wise they are in a bit of a lull but I think they'll be using this weekend to kick start their season again."

While the Giants go to the City of Salford Stadium reeling from a 52-6 humiliation at lowly Castleford, a seventh defeat in eight league games, Higham says Warrington enjoyed the perfect preparation with Monday's hard-fought 15-6 victory over Catalan.

"That was a great build-up for a semi-final," he said. "It was a tough hit-out, just what we needed. The week before against Salford we were nowhere near good enough by our standards but we got our defence right against Catalan.

"They're probably a similar side to Huddersfield - physical in the pack and they've got some backs and half-backs that can really punish you. I thought we did a job on Catalan and hopefully can produce that commitment again. I'd take the same scoreline again, no problem."

Warrington coach Tony Smith has included injury doubts Lee Briers and Trent Waterhouse in his initial 19-man squad. Stand-off Briers missed the win over Catalan Dragons with an Achilles problem while back-row forward Waterhouse was taken to hospital during the second half of that match with a bleeding eye.

Utility back Scott Grix and England prop Eorl Crabtree are both recalled by Huddersfield coach Nathan Brown after sitting out the heavy defeat by the Tigers. Forwards Dale Ferguson and Jacob Fairbank are back in contention, taking the places of Jason Chan, who will miss his first game for the club, and the injured Luke O'Donnell.

Winger Luke George, the club's leading tryscorer, is set to continue despite being concussed at Castleford.

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