Written by Rugby Football League
Super League sides Toronto Wolfpack and Huddersfield Giants both enter the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup this week as they go head-to-head on a special Wednesday evening clash, live on Our League.
This will be the first time both the Wolfpack and the Giants have featured live on Our League as they look to begin a Cup run which could culminate with a trip to Wembley Stadium on Saturday 18 July.
The Wolfpack are making their return to the Challenge Cup after sitting on the sidelines for the 2019 season. Toronto memorably played their first-ever competitive fixture in the Challenge Cup back in 2017 when they overcame National Conference League Premier Division side Siddal 6-14 in difficult conditions.
Toronto – then competing in League 1 – exited the competition at the hands of Salford Red Devils in their maiden Challenge Cup appearance. Victories over Kells and Barrow Raiders saw them progress to Round Six in 2018, but a 10-66 defeat against Warrington Wolves prevented the Canadian outfit from making the final eight.
Huddersfield have lifted the Challenge Cup on six occasions but have failed to do so since 1953. The Giants have visited Wembley Stadium on three occasions since their last triumph in 1962, 2006 and, most recently, 2009 when they beat 25-16 by Warrington Wolves. Simon Woolford’s side fell at the first hurdle last season against St Helens at the Totally Wicked Stadium.
The teams have had contrasting starts to the Super League season with a winless Toronto languishing at the foot of the table while Huddersfield are flying high in 4th spot with four wins from their five league outings.
Impressively, the Giants come into this week’s fixture on the back of a 10-12 victory over last year’s Grand Final winners – and Challenge Cup finalists – St Helens. The loss was St Helens’ first in a home league game since August 2018.
Brian McDermott’s Toronto have struggled to adjust to life in the Super League in the opening six rounds. The Wolfpack have lost all six of their Super League fixtures to date, conceding more points, and scoring less, than any other side in the competition. Their last outing saw them suffer a heavy 66-10 loss to Leeds Rhinos at Emerald Headingley Stadium.
However, they could be boosted by a returning Joe Mellor who may feature for the first time since their defeat at Salford back in February. Prop-forward Darcy Lussick is in line to make his first appearance of the 2020 season.
As for the Giants, Suaia Matagi, Oliver Russell and Louis Senior all return to the Giants squad for Wednesday evening’s fixture, however, half-back Lee Gaskell misses out alongside Ukuma Ta’ai and Joe Wardle.
Toronto Wolfpack: Gareth O’Brien, Matty Russell, Ricky Leutele, Liam Kay, Joe Mellor, Josh McCrone, Adam Sidlow, Andy Ackers, Anthony Mullally, Andrew Dixon, Bodene Thompson, Jon Wilkin, Darcy Lussick, Gadwin Springer, Tom Olbison, Blake Wallace, Sonny Bill Williams, Hakim Miloudi, Tony Gigot.
Huddersfield Giants: Jermaine McGillvary, Jake Wardle, Jordan Turner, Darnell McIntosh, Aidan Sezer, James Gavet, Adam O’Brien, Suaia Matagi, Kenny Edwards, Michael Lawrence, Oliver Wilson, Aaron Murphy, Paul Clough, Tom Holmes, Oliver Russell, Louis Senior, Innes Senior, Sam Hewitt, Sam Wood, Adam Walne, Jone-Luke Kirby.
To watch the game on live on Wednesday 11 March, sign-up to Our League here!
Tickets for the 2020 Coral Challenge Cup Final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 18 July are available here.