Leeds Rhinos: Game time key to Ormondroyd’s loan switch to Knights

Jack Ormondroyd.
Jack Ormondroyd.
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GIANT FORWARD Jack Ormondroyd has taken two steps back in order to go forward with Leeds Rhinos in the future.

Ormondroyd has joined Betfred League One side York City Knights on loan until the end of the season and made his debut in last week’s stunning victory at table-topping Bradford Bulls.

Jack Ormondroyd.

Jack Ormondroyd.

The 26-year-old signed for Rhinos from Featherstone Rovers ahead of the 2017 season, but played only six times last year with another eight appearances this term.

Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington and director of rugby Kevin Sinfield arranged the loan move to give Ormondroyd – who had also been playing on dual-registration for Rovers – consistent game time.

“Gary came to me last week and said they’d like me to go to York so I am playing regularly, quite decent minutes every week,” Ormondroyd confirmed.

“Kev spoke to me the same day and said he thinks it’ll be good for me.

“I agree, it has been hard playing one week for Leeds, then missing two weeks, then playing for Featherstone.

“I haven’t really felt part of a team this year, so to play at York is what I need and I am looking forward to the next few weeks.”

Ormondroyd’s arrival was a boost for York, who trail Bradford only on points difference and are challenging for automatic promotion.

“I wasn’t playing for Featherstone every week, even when I wasn’t playing for Leeds,” he added.

“I don’t think I’m as fit as I need to be and you can only get match fitness by playing games. The opportunity to go to York and play every week for the same team, I think it will be really good for me.”

Ormondroyd is contracted to Rhinos for next year and expects to be back at Leeds – where he is still training full-time – in 2019.

He said: “One thing Kev said was he’s not really seen enough of me, he’s not really seen me play.

“This is an opportunity for me to play as well as I can at York. Kev’s said he’ll sit down with me and have a look through my clips and if I want to speak to him I can.

“It is a good opportunity for me just to play well and hopefully make Kev take notice.”

York will move into a new stadium next year and are developing a reputation as one of the most progressive clubs in the lower divisions.

“When Gary mentioned it to me obviously I thought it’s two leagues down, but I was surprised,” Ormondroyd conceded.

“The facilities over at York are really good and James Ford is a really good coach.

“I think it will improve me playing there.

“Playing every week is important, it’s what I need to do.”