Featherstone Rovers: Coach Hay delighted by Walmsley’s return

Liam Walmsley
Liam Walmsley
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LIAM WALMSLEY’S return to action has delighted Featherstone Rovers coach Andy Hay.

The former Batley Bulldogs forward has yet to make his senior debut for Rovers, after suffering a broken arm in a warm-up game against Halifax last January. He came off the bench in Featherstone’s pre-season defeat at Castleford Tigers two days ago and Hay said: “It was good just to see him play.

“He was nervous, he hadn’t played for a long time and he just wanted to get out there.

“He probably tried a bit too much when he first got on, but he will be better for that.”

Walmsley had to leave the action after being hurt in a tackle, but Hay said there was no serious damage.

“I was about to take him off before he took the knock, but he stayed on to take a carry,” said the coach. “He took the carry as hard as he could and didn’t really help himself. He got a whack, but he’s all right – though he was a little bit dizzy and dazed.”

Andy Ellis (head), Sam Irwin (shoulder) and Ian Hardman (wrist) also suffered “knocks”, but Hay said none is believed to be serious.

Hay is confident Rovers are making progress, despite the 18-0 scoreline at Castleford.

“We can look at the video and see everything we’ve worked on and what we need to work on in the next five or six weeks before the season starts,” he said.

“It gives us a good base now to say this is what we’re looking at, this is what we are doing okay and this is what we need to fix up. It was a good exercise for us.”

Rovers’ trial game at home to Hunslet Hawks, scheduled for Sunday, has been called off, but they will be back in action on January 11, when they make the short trip to Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.