Wakefield Trinity boss backs his young guns

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Midweek matches will be a chance for young players to show what they can do, Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester says - providing there is no relegation from Betfred Super League.

Top-flight clubs are hoping to resume fixtures from August 16, though teams with games in hand - including Trinity - could play those in the first two weeks of that month.

The restart plan includes a number of midweek matches, depending on how late the season finishes.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

In one scenario, the season could be completed by the end of November, so 22 league rounds, plus games in hand, Challenge Cup ties and play-offs, would need to be squeezed into just four months.

Jack Croft scores on his Trinity debut in a Cup tie at St Helens last season. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.Jack Croft scores on his Trinity debut in a Cup tie at St Helens last season. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.
Jack Croft scores on his Trinity debut in a Cup tie at St Helens last season. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe. | jpimedia

Other options are for the Grand Final to be played in December or mid-January.

Clubs - who are normally guaranteed at least five days between matches - will be facing a hectic schedule, whatever is decided, but Chester insisted he is not concerned by the prospect of a fixture pile-up.

“There’s going to be some midweek games, certainly for us because we’ve only played five games so far,” said the Trinity boss, who is also a member of the Rugby Football League’s laws committee.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“There’s going to be plenty of catch-up games, but if there’s no relegation - which I am led to believe there’s not, though I don’t think it is set in stone - I think we can use it as an opportunity to blood some young kids.”

Brad Walker, in possession, joined Wakefield from Widnes Vikings in the off-season. Pixture by Ash Allen/SWpix.com.Brad Walker, in possession, joined Wakefield from Widnes Vikings in the off-season. Pixture by Ash Allen/SWpix.com.
Brad Walker, in possession, joined Wakefield from Widnes Vikings in the off-season. Pixture by Ash Allen/SWpix.com. | freelance

Chester insisted he has faith in Trinity’s youngsters.

“I have got people like Brad Walker who has still not played,” he said.

“Jack Croft trained really well all pre-season, is looking fit and still only young and Connor Bailey as well, who has played with the reserves and is close to the first team.

“Those kind of guys can gain a hell of a lot in these 20-odd games - or however many games we end up playing.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad
Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.
Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe. | jpimedia

“I think that is probably how we will be using certainly the midweek games.”

Trinity avoided relegation on the final weekend last year and were ninth in the 12-team competition when Covid-19 forced a stoppage three months ago.

The team finishing bottom of Super League in 2020 is due to be relegated and replaced by this season’s Championship Grand Final winners, but Chester doesn’t believe that’s realistic, under the new circumstances.

“I think the whole season has been compromised,” Chester said.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“I don’t see how you can get through this season and have relegation.

“I don’t see how the Championship is going to reopen.

“They are heavily dependent on matchday revenue, it’s not like Super League clubs who, every month, get a contribution from Sky.

“At the moment they are getting 80 per cent of their wages paid [under the government’s furlough scheme] and there’ll be a lot of clubs who won’t be able to afford to start the season behind closed doors.”

Chester, though, said he has been impressed with the way the sport has pulled together in the face of arguably its biggest crisis.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“Everyone’s doing their bit, players and staff,” he said. “They have all taken large cuts, but we are in it together - the game is larger than any individual. The sooner we get the game back up and running, the better. If it is behind closed doors, so be it.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. These are challenging times but the team at the Yorkshire Evening Post need your support more than ever in the weeks ahead.

While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you. In order for us to continue to provide high quality and trusted local news on this free-to-read site, I am asking you - wherever possible and providing it is safe for you to do so - to also please purchase a copy of our newspaper.

Inevitably falling advertising revenues will start to have an impact on local newspapers and the way we continue to work during this period of uncertainty. So the support of our readers has never been more important as we try to make sure that we keep you connected with the city you live in during this time. But being your eyes and ears comes at a price. We need your support more than ever to buy our newspapers during this crisis.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Our team of trusted reporters are working incredibly hard behind the scenes- from kitchen tables and spare bedrooms - to look at how we can do this and your continued support to the YEP will help to protect its viability in the days and weeks ahead.

For more details on our subscription offers please visit www.localsubsplus.co.uk/YEP, email [email protected] or call us on 0330 4033004

Thank you

Laura Collins

Editor

READ MORE:

https://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/opinion/were-therewithyou-now-your-yep-needs-your-support-too-laura-collins-yep-editor-2521777

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.