Pre-season schedule is rigourous test of Rovers, believes Duffy

Featherstone Rovers head coach John Duffy.
Featherstone Rovers head coach John Duffy.
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COACH JOHN Duffy has welcomed Featherstone Rovers’ testing pre-season schedule.

Rovers visit Castleford Tigers on Boxing Day and play host to Halifax on January 14 before Leeds Rhinos visit LD Nutrition Stadium, Post Office Road, 12 days later. “Our friendlies will provide a few good hit-outs for us,” Duffy predicted.

“It will be good to see the guys go up against some high-quality opposition.

“The Halifax game is an interesting one as we start the Championship season against them in February and we will be looking to perform. There is no point in not testing ourselves.

“We want to test and trial the way we play against the very best teams.

“It will help in terms of intensity going into round one of the regular season.”

Duffy, who took over from Jon Sharp in August, said the early stages of pre-season have been “really positive so far”.

He added: “The new boys are settling in well and everyone is responding well to what we are doing.

“It is really exciting for me as, for the first time, I am getting a chance to put my stamp on things here.

“It was a pleasure to come in and coach the side through the Super-8s last season, but it is far more ideal to have a pre season under my belt, going into a full season as coach,” continued Duffy.

“It is great to see the players chomping at the bit at such an early stage.”