New Huddersfield (12/1 Grand Final Winner) boss Ian Watson says his relationship with former interim coach Luke Robinson is “working really well” as they continue their preparations for the 2021 Betfred Super League season.
Watson was brought in as Simon Woolford’s replacement at the John Smith’s Stadium in November, taking the job just three days after leaving Salford Red Devils, whom he lead to the 2019 Grand Final and last year’s Challenge Cup final.
The 44-year-old’s arrival meant Robinson reverted to his previous role as assistant, a decision that was rumoured to have generated friction between the men.
There was a similar situation last term at Hull FC where Andy Last decided to leave and take up a position at Wakefield having spent 23 years with the Airlie Birds, the final eight months or so as interim coach before Brett Hodgson was brought in.
Watson admits he and Robinson enjoyed some honest chats when he first came in but following some careful delegation, are now dovetailing nicely on the training paddock.
The Giants begin their Betfred Super League campaign away at Hull FC on March 28 (Match Betting – Hull FC 5/6, Draw 20/1, Huddersfield Evens) before hosting Catalans on April 3.
Despite initial rumours of unrest, Watson says he and the former England half-back are enjoying working together and believes their respective qualities can bring the best out of the squad as they plan for the final weekend in March.
“The good thing with Robbo is that we speak quite a bit,” Watson told The Yorkshire Post. “We’d had a chat a while back about this and we said when you’ve been head coach, and a new head coach comes in, it is a bit hard to then give up that control.
“But he’s got his role. Initially, when we started pre-season as he was learning to understand my philosophies, Robbo was working mainly with individuals.
“I was focusing on systems and structures and he was working really hard on individuals. But now we’re getting to the point where we’re on the same page and working together on stuff all the time. It’s working really, really well. There’s been no issues of him wanting to dig his heels in.”
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