Wakefield Wildcats drop star men for Halifax clash

Wakefield Wildcats v Leigh Centurions. Tim Smith.
Wakefield Wildcats v Leigh Centurions. Tim Smith.
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Three players have been dropped by Wakefield Trinity Wildcats for Saturday’s must-win home clash with Halifax following their involvement in a police incident last weekend.

Full-back Kevin Locke, scrum-half Tim Smith and centre Reece Lyne have all been left out of Wildcats’ initial 19-man squad and it is understood they have been suspended by the cub.

Smith was earlier this week charged with failing to provide a sample for analysis and driving without due care and attention after an incident in Brough, East Yorkshire, on Sunday.

The 30-year-old Australian has been bailed to appear before East Yorkshire Magistrates Court later this month.

“There’s been a couple of things that have happened that require the club to deal with so those players have not been selected for this game,” coach Brian Smith said.

Asked if he felt let down by the players at a crucial time of the season, Smith said: “I’m more excited about this game. It’s part of why I came here. I was looking forward to trying to be a part of Wakey’s resurgence and hopefully we can continue that.”

Wildcats are conducting their own investigation into last Sunday’s events.

Chairman Michael Carter said he is hopeful that will be concluded next week.

Tom Johnstone will come into the team for Saturday on the wing in place of Lee Smith, who switches to Locke’s full-back spot,

Pita Godinet partners Jacob Miller at half-back and Joe Arundel is a straight replacement for Lyne.

Prop Scott Anderson has also been dropped for Saturday’s tie in the First Utility Qualifiers, but it is understood that is not related to the incident in Brough.

Anthony Walker and Andy Yates are vying to replace Anderson and Jordan Crowther and Max Jowitt have also been drafted into the squad.

John Kear, left, and Chris Chester

Wakefield Trinity: Chester’s in no hurry to replace Kear on his staff