LOCAL HERO Jamie Rooney is relishing his return to Big Fellas Stadium this weekend.
Rooney, who starred for Featherstone Rovers from 1998-2002 and had a spell back there last year, is coach of Sunday’s pre-season visitors Featherstone Lions.
The National Conference outfit are also preparing for their new campaign and Rooney said: “We are all looking forward to the fixture and it will be good preparation for our lads to test themselves against a professional club.
“Our season starts later so our pre-season preparations are behind that of Rovers, who have been training since the beginning of November, but it will be interesting to see how we get on.
“It will be a good experience for our boys.
“The vast majority of them are from the town and have grown up watching Featherstone Rovers so it’s great that this game is taking place.
“We would like to thank Rovers for the invitation and we will give them a game on Sunday. Our side is quite young, the average age is only around 24, so it will be a good opportunity for some lads who possibly are thinking of making a step up in the sport.”
Rooney added: “We’ve got a talented side and it will be good for the people of Featherstone to see the quality players that we develop down at the Lions. I know both clubs are hoping for a good turnout by the local community and hopefully this can become a regular fixture in the calendar.”
Rovers coach Jon Sharp will field mainly a reserve side, but said some of the team who lost at Castleford Tigers last weekend will feature.
Andy Bostock, who had x-rays on a suspected fractured jaw following the Castleford game, has been cleared of serious injury.
Admission on Sunday (3pm) is £5 for adults, £3 concessions and £1 juniors.