Joe Hirst is determined to be a winner when Sheffield Eagles play their third successive Grand Final.
The loose-forward played when the Eagles lost in 2011 but had to watch from the stands as they took the trophy last year. A broken jaw in the semi-final had ruled him out but he aims to wipe out those memories when the Eagles face Batley Bulldogs.
“It will be good to play in the final. I played in the one before and we lost that” he said. “The team’s been calling this our ‘back-to-back’ year – no other team has ever won two finals.”
This time around Hirst came through the semi at Halifax without a problem as Eagles booked a trip to Leigh Sports Village on Sunday. But prop forward Liam Higgins wasn’t so lucky and is set to miss out with a knee injury. Coach Mark Aston said: “The Fax game was dedicated to Joe Hirst who had a bad break in the semi-final against Leigh last year and missed out on the final. It doesn’t look good for Liam - it’ll be sad if he doesn’t make the final.”
Hirst says the team is ready for one last effort. B”atley are playing well but it doesn’t worry me” he said. “This has been the longest season but a lot of it’s in your head, we keep saying it’s one more game and to win the final it will be worth it.”
He added: “We know that it’s all about us and we know that if we play well we can beat anybody.”