Hunslet’s development delivers top spot ahead of Bowling cup test

Hunslet's Gareth Potts.Hunslet's Gareth Potts.
Hunslet's Gareth Potts.
IT IS very early days, but Hunslet are top of Betfred League One with a game in hand on most of their rivals and coach Gary Thornton feels they are making good progress.

The Parksiders followed their opening win at Doncaster by beating visitors West Wales Raiders 58-4 in tough conditions yesterday.

“Including the warm-up games, since we played [Hunslet Club] Parkside we’ve won five on the bounce,” Thornton pointed out.

“I am pretty pleased with the progress we are making.

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Hunslet's Michael Haley.Hunslet's Michael Haley.
Hunslet's Michael Haley.

“We’ve got West Bowling at home on Saturday in the Challenge Cup and then a very tough game at North Wales.

“But it has been a steady progression from where we were in pre-season to now. We are continuing to improve and there’s positive signs for us.”

Winger Gareth Potts scored a hat-trick against West Wales and Thornton felt the ‘right edge’ of him, centre Ben Heaton, pivot Reece Dean and back-rower Duane Straugheir was influential.

“We did some good stuff,” Thornton agreed readily enough. “It was spoiled a bit by the conditions, but no complaints.

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Gary Thornton.Gary Thornton.
Gary Thornton.

“We played very well in attack, though we dropped off a bit in the last 10 minutes and let in a soft try.

“That was disappointing but, apart from that, for 70 minutes we were good and we scored some nice tries.”

Dean was sent-off after a fight and Thornton admitted that was a concern.

“We’ll have to see what comes of it,” he said.

“Hopefully, he [Reece Dean] avoids a ban because he has been quite influential in what we’ve done so far.”

Michael Haley took a bang to the face and did not return for the second half so could be a doubt for this weekend’s Cup tie against the Bradford-based National Conference amateurs, West Bowling.