Hunslet Hawks have entered into a partnership agreement with Kingstone Press League One club Hemel Stags for the 2015 season.
The partnership will enable members of Hawks’ Championship squad to be dual-registered with the Hertfordshire club.
Hunslet already have a similar arrangement which allows them to use players from Super League neighbours Leeds Rhinos. Hawks director of rugby Darren Williams said: “I have been in discussion with Hemel’s coach Troy Perkins for a couple of months now and mooted this idea back in November. We have had further talks and agree this will be of benefit to both clubs.”
He added: “A number of our players who find themselves not featuring in our first team will be made available to Troy for selection and it will be his decision as to who he decides to select. We had a number of players on loan at Hemel last year and that worked out well for the players concerned and ensured they were match-fit and ready to go when we required them.”
Perkins reckons the arrangement is a huge boost for his club. “I’m really excited to be forming this partnership with Hunslet,” he said. “Like all clubs in the south we don’t have a very big squad and with it being a long and challenging season it will be good opportunity to call on quality players from Hunslet which, in turn, will add more depth to our squad.
“We had a couple of Hunslet players on loan last season and they did well with us and came with the right attitude. It will also benefit Hunslet by giving some of their players much-needed game time so they are match-fit when they are called back into their matchday squad.”
Hawks are in pre-season action tomorrow at home to Salford Red Devils (2pm). Hunslet also have a game on Sunday at Doncaster (3pm), but their Championship opener at Featherstone has been switched to Wakefield’s Rapid Solicitors Stadium on Monday, February 16, kick-off 7.30pm.