Dewsbury Rams pay a heavy price for derby loss

Injuries to hooker Luke Blake and back-rower Rob Spicer have realised Dewsbury Rams coach Warren Jowitt's worst fears.

Blake suffered medial knee ligament damage in the warm-up ahead of Rams' opening pre-season game at Batley Bulldogs two days ago, while Spicer hurt a hamstring.

Jowitt said before the match that the potential for injuries was a major concern and the club's share of a 2,000-plus gate did little to cushion the blow.

The coach admitted: "These games are all right for the club, but they are no good for the players. We are two key players down straight away."

Jowitt added: "Losing Luke was a major blow for us, because he is our first-choice hooker. Now it's a bit of a waiting game to see how long he'll be out for. Hopefully he will be ready for the start of the season.

"If it's torn off the bone he will need an operation, but if not it will heal itself. We use a doctor in Leicester who can speed up recovery and he will be going to see him."

Of Spicer, Jowitt said: "It's just a case of giving it a rest. Hopefully he will be all right."

Jowitt was unconcerned by Sunday's 30-6 defeat.

He said: "It was our first hit-out and at the moment we are in pre-season training.

"There are things we haven't worked on at all. January is when we'll put our structures in place, both offensively and defensively.

"It was good to get a run out, but I don't read much into it."

Paul Heckingbottom.

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