Featherstone Rovers braced for tough test at Newcastle Thunder

JAMES WEBSTER is expecting a testing encounter as he prepares his Featherstone Rovers side for Saturday’s contest with Newcastle Thunder.
HEAD COACH: James Webster. Picture: Dec Hayes Photography.HEAD COACH: James Webster. Picture: Dec Hayes Photography.
HEAD COACH: James Webster. Picture: Dec Hayes Photography.

The north east club were promoted to the Championship after a successful application following Leigh Centurions’ promotion to Super League.

They have won three of their opening nine league games, drawing one while losing the other five. Rovers have won all nine of their games to start the season but Webster has highlighted the experience within the Thunder squad as something to be wary of.

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“Newcastle have a huge amount of experience in their squad and a lot of potential,” he said.

“Both of their half-backs have played in Super League, you have got Ukuma Ta’ai and Bob Beswick, who have played in Super League as well.

“You have got Jack Johnson in there, he has been in and around Warrington. Matty Wright has played 150 games in the NRL.

“They are a massively experienced squad. I expect good things from them for the rest of the year.”

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Featherstone are hopeful of welcoming James Harrison back into their squad this weekend. They could be without Junior Moors, who has been named in the 19-man Combined Nations All Stars squad to face England on Friday night.

If Moors doesn’t make the 17-man squad for the fixture, he will be available for Rovers on Saturday.

Webster added: “Junior is an experienced player. As a club, I am not sure it is ideal to tell you the truth. For someone who hasn’t played at that level for a long time to be thrown into that.

“I am happy for Junior. He is a great bloke and we wish him all the best with it.

“He would be available on Saturday, if he doesn’t play. So we will just have to wait and see what happens.”