WAKEFIELD TRINITY centre Joe Arundel made a big impact on his debut for Dewsbury Rams in their 23-20 derby win over Batley Bulldogs.
Arundel played on dual-registration and Rams boss Neil Kelly was delighted with his contribution.
It was Arundel’s first game since suffering an ankle injury in Trinity’s Ladbrokes Challenge Cup defeat at Huddersfield in May.
“I’d never met him before Friday,” Kelly said. “He got a clout on the nose for his troubles, but he really went that extra mile for us.”
Kelly was pleased with all his outside-backs. He enthused: “After most games you praise your forwards for their efforts, but I thought our backs stood up really well. Dale Morton is having a wow of a season, along with Josh Guzdek, James Glover, Gareth Potts and Adam Ryder who has had a big impact since he joined us from Keighley.”
Rams moved up a place to ninth in the Betfred Championship, five points clear of the relegation zone.
Kelly reflected: “After 75 minutes we dropped a goal to go 23-10 up and we almost fooled ourselves into thinking we had won.
“They scored two tries to make it 23-20 with 90 seconds on the clock and I was thinking ‘is this going to happen’? But overall, apart from that period, I was really pleased with the players’ efforts and proud of them as well.
“They really stepped up from 10-6 down at half-time and I thought we were by far and away the best side in the second half.”
Rams came through with no major injuries, though James Crowther, another dual-registered Wakefield player, has a sternum problem and is unlikely to feature in the squad for Saturday’s game at Toulouse Olympique.
Kelly is also considering resting prop Jode Sheriffe.