Mind-blowing: Wakefield Trinity boss' anger after Salford Red Devils fixture is called off
Wakefield Trinity boss Chris Chester is fed up of his side being “kicked from pillar to post” because of Covid outbreaks elsewhere.
Trinity were due to follow Thursday's trip to Betfred Super League leaders Catalans Dragons with a home match against Salford Red Devils on Monday, but that has been postponed because the visitors have more than seven players unavailable due to coronavirus.
Wakefield played more games than any other club last year and have not called any matches off because of the pandemic this season.
Next week is the second time a Trinity fixture against Salford has not gone ahead on the scheduled date and Chester fears having to fit it into a midweek slot.
“If this was a normal season and you couldn’t fulfill a game, you would have your points deducted or it would be a 24-0 loss,” he stated.
“Why can’t that still be the case?
“We are going to run out of time to get all the fixtures in.
“Something has got to change. I don’t know what that is, it is far beyond my paygrade, but I am sick to death of clubs like ours getting punished, or what feels like a punishment, for other clubs not following protocols or not having an academy and not being able to fulfill a fixture list.”
Chester added: “I just find it mind-blowing at times
“We are doing our best to make sure we are fulfilling everything we need to.
“Through no fault of ours, we are expected to catch up on a game.
“It is just really, really frustrating.
“All we can focus on is making sure we have our own house in order and make sure we are doing the right things.”
Chester has named a 19-man squad for the game in Perpignan.
Jay Pitts is suspended, but Max Jowitt, Kyle Wood and Tinirau Arona are in contention for a recall.
Catalans are on a nine-game winning run and Chester identified Australian stand-off James Maloney, who returns from a two-game ban, as the French’s side’s most potent threat.
“I think Maloney has been the best Australian signing we have had over here for a number of years,” Chester said.
“Their spine has been excellent and they have some big blokes in there that cause teams a lot of problems with their sheer size.
“It is going to be a really physical challenge and a really big test for us, but it is one the guys are looking forward to.”
Joel Tomkins and Corentin Le Cam are also back for Catalans, but Mike McMeeken is rested and Benjamin Garcia drops out because of injury.
Catalans Dragons: from Mourgue, Davies, Langi, Whare, Yaha, Maloney, Drinkwater, Dudson, McIlorum, Bousquet, Whitley, DaCosta, Jullien, Seguier, Goudemand, Le Cam, J Tomkins, Chan, Kasiano, S Tomkins, Rouge.
Wakefield Trinity: from Jowitt, Lyne, Kay, Miller, Lino, Fifita, K Wood, Arona, Ashurst, Tanginoa, Battye, Batchelor, Green, Senior, Arundel, B Walker, Aydin, Kershaw, Hampshire.
Referee: Marcus Griffiths (Widnes).
Kick-off: Thursday, 6.15pm UK time.