Toronton Wolfpack v Hunslet - Gary Thornton eyes damage limitation in Canada

Gary Thornton
Gary Thornton
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BOSS GARY Thornton admits today’s historic fixture in Canada is about “damage limitation” for Hunslet.

The south Leeds side will face unbeaten Kingstone Press League One leaders Toronto Wolfpack for the first time.

We want to be competitive and we are going to try and win the game, but we can’t afford to damage our points difference too much.

Hunslet coach, Gary Thornton

Hunslet slipped out of the top eight last weekend – when they were without a game – and Thornton is realistic about their prospects today.

“There’s no pressure on us in terms of this game, but we’ve got to try and get some positives out of it,” Thornton said.

“We’ll be spending five days together as a group so there’ll be a bit of team-bonding going on.

“Me and Gary (Barnett, Thornton’s assistant) are new to the club so we will get to know a bit more about the players.

“It has to be damage limitation because we are out of the eight now after results went against us last weekend and there’s massive pressure on us in our remaining games.”

But Thornton insisted Hunslet aren’t in Canada just to make up the numbers.

“We are going to go there and give it our best shot,” he stressed.

“We want to be competitive and we are going to try and win the game, but we can’t afford to damage our points difference too much.

“It is very, very tight and competitive in the race for the top-eight and it could all come down to points difference.”

Hunslet – who will be backed by around 60 fans – flew to Toronto yesterday.

The game kicks off at 7pm local time – midnight here – and will be televised live On Premier Sports.

Hunslet’s squad will fly home overnight tomorrow, arriving at Glasgow Airport on Monday morning and completing the journey by coach.

They are the first Yorkshire team to play in Toronto and have travelled without key players Jake Normington, Danny Ansell, Joel Gibson, Liam Mackay, Sean Hesketh, Matt Carbutt and Michael Haley.

Recruits Shaun Roberts, Tommy Brierley and Luke Fowden have been drafted into the squad.

Brierley, a former Leeds Rhinos academy player, has made his second trip to Toronto this month after featuring for Coventry Bears against the Wolfpack at Lamport Stadium three weeks ago.

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