A FIRST win has given Dewsbury Rams boss Lee Greenwood “food for thought” heading into the season, but Featherstone Rovers’ acting-coach Paul March felt his side’s performance in the 20-14 Yorkshire Cup loss was a step forward.
Rovers hit back from 10-10 down to level the scores in the second period, but Rams held on to pick up a morale-boosting result against their Betfred Championship rivals.
Greenwood described the tie as a “mirror image” of Rams’ Boxing Day game at Batley when they lost 16-10 after training 10-0 at the break.
“We got better as that game went along,” he recalled.
“This time I thought we were all right in the first half, then it was a poor start to the second half and it carried on really.
“Losing a man to the sin-bin and then the amount of defending we had to do, we’ve probably done quite well to win that.”
He added: “It’s food for thought, some lads have done themselves plenty of favours heading towards the season and others not quite at the races or ready for this level yet.
“There’s some work to do with people.
“At any point there were probably six or seven lads either playing their first game in ages or playing their first game at this level. It was always going to be scrappy, so I am not too concerned.”
Greenwood insisted: “There’s plenty of positives, some of the defence was good.
“I was disappointed with a couple of the tries in the second half, but I thought in the first half we defended really well.
“There’s some areas to work on, but it’s always better to have areas to work on after a win.”
Rovers had been beaten 56-0 at Castleford Tigers in their opening pre-season match and March reflected: “I thought we were better in collision and our spacing in defence was better.
“We are rugby league players, we don’t like losing games, but we will take a lot more positives from this than last week.
“We still had a lot of trialists in there.”
March praised trialist Jorge Richardson, from Sharlston Rovers, but a knee injury to new signing James Harrison was a “concern”.
He said: “First thoughts are it could be serious, but we’ll see how it settles down.”