Business as usual as Hunslet refuse to be distracted by RFL’s league structure proposals

Hunslet coach, Gary Thornton.
Hunslet coach, Gary Thornton.
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IT IS business as usual for Hunslet despite the uncertainty surrounding Betfred League One.

Under the existing format of the competition, the league leaders will be promoted with the sides from second to fifth playing off for another place in the Championship next year.

But the Rugby Football League (RFL) are considering a late change which would see the top two go up to the second tier and the teams finishing from third to sixth doing battle to join them.

With four games remaining, beginning at home to London Skolars tomorrow (3pm), Hunslet are sixth so moving the goalposts could give them a lifeline into the play-offs.

“It could potentially benefit us if we don’t get into fifth,” admitted coach Gary Thornton.

“If it changes we’d be in a play-off position, but it might not happen and our aim is still to go up to fifth.

“That was our aim at the start of the season and there’s no change to our objectives.

“We want to finish as high as we possibly can. Everything we’ve worked towards doesn’t change as far as I am concerned.

“If there is a change we will deal with it when it comes.”

Hunslet are behind fifth-placed Oldham on ‘for and against’ and two points ahead of Whitehaven who they visit next week.

They face Newcastle Thunder and Coventry after that so all their remaining games are against teams below them in the table, but Thornton is demanding a huge improvement on the effort in Hunslet’s 48-6 drubbing at leaders York City Knights two weeks ago.

“It was our worst performance of the season by a long way,” he admitted.

“We are possibly a year behind York in our development. We are a new team and they are a very good team who’ve been together a while and they’ve added some good players.

“That is the standard we have got to try and work towards.

“We let ourselves down in a lot of areas of the game, but the good thing about sport is we get an opportunity to put it right.

“We are looking for a massive improvement.

“The players know they let themselves down, but hopefully we learn from it and take that into this week and the rest of the season.”