Wakefield Wildcats: In-the-know boss refuses to take the Eagles lightly

Chris Chester.
Chris Chester.
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TEAM CHANGES do not mean Wakefield Trinity Wildcats boss Chris Chester is taking victory over Sheffield Eagles in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup fifth round tonight for granted.

Wildcats are on a four-game winning run in First Utility Super League, while Eagles are a disappointing seventh on the Kingstone Press Championship table.

Chester has opted to rest Reece Lyne, Nick Scruton, Scott Moore, Danny Kirmond and Jonny Molloy, with Scott Anderson, Chris Annakin, Craig Hall, Ashley Gibson, Stuart Howarth, Jason Walton and Andy Yates all in line for a call-up.

“It is chance to bring a couple of fresh players in and we are mindful we’ve just come through a tough Easter period and a lot of players have played a lot of minutes,” Chester pointed out.

“I am going to freshen the squad up, but we are not taking it lightly.

“We want to continue to build on the momentum we’ve got at this moment in time.”

Chester was coach of Hull Kingston Rovers when they beat Sheffield 38-28 in last year’s Qualifiers.

Wildcats lost 24-10 to Eagles in the same competition and the team boss said: “We know what they are capable of.

“We need to make sure that doesn’t happen this time.

“They will be really fired up and we have to make sure we match their energy early on.”

Hull KR proved last year a team near the bottom of the Super League table can go all the way to Wembley.

Their run to the final has given new hope to clubs like Wakefield Trinity Wildcats, and Chester said: “It is about having a bit of luck and getting teams at the right time and getting home fixtures.

“We had a fantastic journey last year and I’d love to replicate that with these guys.

“But there’s a lot of good teams to come into the competition in the next round and we have got to make sure we are in the hat with them.”

Wakefield Trinity Wildcats from: Anderson, Annakin, Arona, Arundel, Ashurst, England, Finn, Gibson, Hall, Howarth, Johnstone, Jones-Bishop, Jowitt, Miller, Simon, Sio, A Tupou, Walton, Yates

Sheffield Eagles from: Laulu Togagae, Worrincy, Yere, Tyson, Aston, Thorpe, Carlile, Stringer, Knowles, Straugheir, James, Fozard, Neal, Mexico, Minchella, Blagbrough, Hewitt, Millar, Jacks.

Referee: Ben Thaler (Wakefield).

Kick-off: Tonight, 8pm.

John Kear, left, and Chris Chester

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