COACH CHRIS Chester says his Wakefield Trinity players have been “training the house down” – now he wants to see them tested against quality opposition.
Trinity will step up preparations for the 2019 Betfred Super League season when they visit Leeds Rhinos on Boxing Day in the annual Wetherby Whaler Festive Challenge.
Chester has named a strong squad including recruits Danny Brough, George King and Craig Kopczak and could not be happier with the way pre-season has progressed so far.
“The new lads have fitted in really, really well,” Chester said.
“Training has gone well, everybody’s training the house down, there’s a lot of positivity at the moment and I am just looking forward to the start of the year.
“We’ve got some new faces and new combinations, the biggest being Broughy and Milky [Jacob Miller] playing together for the first time and we just need to get through without any injuries.”
Brough – who was Super League’s Man of Steel in 2013 – made 51 Super League appearances for Wakefield from 2008-2010 and has rejoined them from Huddersfield Giants in a swap deal involving Scott Grix.
He could be hugely influential this year as Trinity aim to turn the narrow defeats which cost them a top-four place last season into victories.
Chester enthused: “He has fitted in really, really well.
“He is 35, but he is winning every fitness trial and he has given everybody a lift.
“He is very vocal on and off the field and I am pretty certain we will be a better team in 2019 with Danny Brough in there.
“I knew he was a competitor, but I have seen some really good leadership qualities from him.”
Trinity faced York City Knights in an opposed training session at Featherstone Rovers on Saturday and Chester reckons Wednesday’s game will be fiercely contested.
“I think this is going to be the most competitive Super League season so far,” he predicted.
“Leeds have signed some real quality.
“They’ve got some good, exciting players and I am looking forward to seeing them play on Boxing Day as well.”