Davy: This is just the start for Giants
Huddersfield Giants chairman Ken Davy has pledged to help bring more success to the club after seeing them top Super league for the first time for 81 years.
Although Huddersfield is the birthplace of rugby league and the club were one of the powerhouses of the 1930s and 1950s, they have endured lean times over the last half a century.
They have tasted success at lower-league level, lifting the third division title in 1992 and the inaugural Buddies Cup (now the Northern Rail Cup) under Tony Smith a decade ago, but it is 51 years since they were last crowned champions.
They last won the Challenge Cup in 1953 and the last time they topped the table was in 1932.
Davy, who has bankrolled the club since 1996, admits there have been some "dark days" during his time at the helm and points to their relegation in 2001 as the turning point.
"It's been a long time coming, 81 years," Davy said. "I've been involved with the club as chairman for 17 years and I have to say at times it's felt like 81.
"The darkest day was when we got relegated from Super League but it proved to be our salvation because we were able to rebuild the club and we've grown and grown gradually in Super League since then."
Smith guided the Giants back to the top flight in 2002 and helped consolidate their place in Super League before leaving to join Leeds Rhinos 12 months later.
Jon Sharp took over and led Huddersfield to the 2006 Challenge Cup final before making way for the arrival of Australian Nathan Brown, who took them to within 80 minutes of the Grand Final in 2010.
When the club parted company with Brown last summer, his assistant Paul Anderson was the obvious choice to take over and he is a firm favourite to be named Super League coach of the year after a remarkable first season in charge.
Davy is delighted with the efforts of the former Bradford Bulls and Great Britain prop forward and expects him to deliver more silverware.
"We never had any doubt about Paul," he said. "It was not a hard decision to take. He was absolutely ready for the job and he has demonstrated that.
"The reality is this is a great result for the club and the town and, when you bear in mind Huddersfield is the birthplace of rugby league, it is right and proper that we should be in the top echelon of the game and expecting to winning trophies.
"This is our first major trophy and it's a big one for this club. I see this, however, as being the start of something, the beginning of what I hope will be some golden years for the Huddersfield Giants.
"It's been a hard journey but I've always said that success is a journey, not a destination. This isn't the end of the journey - it's a stop along the way."
Huddersfield, who round off their league campaign at Bradford on Saturday, will have a home tie against Leeds or Wigan Warriors in the first round of the play-offs and are just two wins away from a maiden Grand Final appearance.
"Obviously our next target is Old Trafford and we've got some really important matches to play between now and then but we'll give it our best shot," Davy said.
The Giants players celebrated with champagne after skipper Danny Brough was presented with the league leaders' shield following Sunday night's 40-0 win over Wakefield Trinity Wildcats but are determined not to rest on their laurels, according to scrum-half Luke Robinson.
"It's great for the club but, fingers crossed, there will be something more at the end of it," Robinson said.
"It's amazing to win the league leaders' shield. It was a goal of ours at the beginning of the year.
"It's great for everybody involved but you forget who's won it when Grand Final time comes around."