Leeds Rhinos: Ormondroyd is ready to answer Leeds’ call

Jack Ormondroyd.
Jack Ormondroyd.
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GIANT FRONT-ROWER Jack Ormondroyd says he is determined to be fit and ready for if and when his Leeds Rhinos call-up comes.

Ormondroyd has 11 appearances to his name since joining Rhinos from Featherstone Rovers ahead of the 2017 season.

Mikolaj Oledski.

Mikolaj Oledski.

Only five of those have been this year, despite Rhinos’ injury problems in the pack, but he featured for Featherstone on dual-registration last weekend.

Rhinos’ initial 19-man squad for Saturday’s game at Catalans Dragons was due to be named by coach Brian McDermott today.

Anthony Mullally is suspended and McDermott has said he does not expect long-term front-row casualties Brad Singleton and Mitch Garbutt to be available for the trip to France.

Another prop, Nathaniel Peteru, suffered his second biceps injury of the season in last weekend’s defeat by Castleford Tigers and is facing 10-12 weeks on the sidelines.

Adam Cuthbertson.

Adam Cuthbertson.

That leaves Adam Cuthbertson, youngster Mikolaj Oledzki and Ormondroyd as the only available props in Leeds’ 30-man first team squad.

Second-rower Carl Ablett missed the Magic Weekend derby after suffering an ankle injury in Rhinos’ Ladbrokes Challenge Cup win at Widnes Vikings eight days earlier, but could be available for the game in Perpignan. Though his return would be a boost for Leeds’ pack, lack of size has been an issue this season and – at 6ft 5ins and 16st 5lb – that is something Ormondroyd can provide.

Of his chances of a call-up during the injury crisis, Ormondroyd, 26, said: “There’s been forwards injured for quite a while now and I haven’t been playing.

“You never know, I am going to bide my time, hopefully play as much as I can at Featherstone and hopefully my time will come here.

“It is very frustrating [not playing], it’s not good for me really.

“I have been doing a lot of running and I feel fit in myself, but it’s completely different to playing.

“The only way you can get match fitness is by playing games.

“I just need to be playing.

“The key is, when I do get a chance hopefully I’ll be able to get a few minutes in and play as well as I can and hopefully keep my place in the team.”

Rovers take on Halifax at the Betfred Championship’s Summer Bash in Blackpool on Saturday.

They were beaten 42-20 by Leigh Centurions five days ago, but Ormondroyd insisted he has benefitted from getting back on the field.

“Before last Saturday I hadn’t played for a few weeks,” he said.

“I’m not injured, I’ve just not been getting in the team.

“It was nice to get a game last weekend and I ended up playing about 70 minutes so it was good to get some minutes under my belt.

“Personally, I thought it went all right. We lost, but it was good for me personally to get some decent game time.”