Worrying times in rugby league, but we’re all doing our best – Luke Gale

IT IS really disappointing last night’s game was called off and we are in worrying times for our sport.

Friday, 4th September 2020, 8:27 am

We are paid to play rugby and we prepared for a short turnaround and prepared for Wakefield and that has gone to waste.

We got a hint on Tuesday night it might not be going ahead, but it is just one of those things – frustrating is probably the best word to describe it.

This is the third week in a row at least one game has been postponed because of coronavirus and the fixture we were supposed to be playing at Catalans next Monday has gone as well.

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Luke Gale congratulates Richie Myler on his try against Salford. Picture: Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com.

I don’t know the circumstances of what’s gone on at Wakefield or where the virus has come from and, being completely honest, I don’t know what the answer is, to prevent this sort of thing happening again.

There’s calls for tighter bubbles, but I can’t see how that would work. Unless you are going to get all the families in the bubble as well, it’s not practical – or would it be a case of taking players and staff away from their families and putting them into isolation together somewhere? I don’t think anyone wants that.

My partner is a teacher and she is back at work now, managing 30 kids in a classroom, so I don’t understand the logistics of it.

It is not as easy as saying just stay in your own bubble, but the more times this happens, the bigger the problem becomes.

Richie Myler. Picture: Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com.

There’s already a backlog of games and if this continues it is only going to get worse.

Our boys – and I am sure everyone in Super League – are putting safety first.

We’re not going out unless we need to, so I don’t think it can be helped.

I also keep hearing ‘well this isn’t happening in the NRL’ and ‘why aren’t we doing what the NRL does’, but it’s a completely different situation.

Ash Handley pictured against Salford at Warrington last weekend. Picture: Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com.

I am not sure what the answer is, but everyone is doing their best.

Warrington are playing tonight without six players who are isolating from their game against Wakefield last week and I think that is commendable, fair play to them.

They have said they will play regardless; they have got strength in depth and some good kids coming through and I respect that.

I do think the RFL and Super League have done a great job in changing fixtures at the last minute and that’s also commendable, but I am not sure how long we can keep doing it.

Leeds Rhinos' Dom Crosby who will retire at the end of the season. Picture: Steve Riding.

There will come a time when there’s that many games to fit in, it just won’t be possible any more.

I love playing rugby league, we’ve no game this week and there’s a stop-start feel about it at the moment, which is disappointing.

In other news, all the best to Dom Crosby who has announced he is retiring at the end of this season. He has had a great career, winning trophies at Wigan, going on to Warrington and coming to Leeds.

He is a tough guy and a good character. He has an unbelievable mindset and was part of the leadership group at Leeds. What he has been through, on and off the field, I take my hat off to him, how tough he has been – and he is a great lad as well.

Whenever somebody retires through injury it is always tough, but I am sure he will look back on the great days he has had. He will see it as a positive rather than a negative and how lucky he has been winning those trophies. Not everyone gets to do that.

It is sad, but he has done what’s right for him and his family.

We’ve also had the news this week of Richie Myler’s new contract and I am delighted for him. After someone came in to play seven, he could quite easily have spat the dummy out, but he has fitted in at nine and then kind of reinvented himself as a full-back.

I know how good a player he is, I love playing with him. He has got a knack of scoring tries, he knows where to be and he’s a fine footballer.

He is playing with a smile on his face and fair play to him.

The new contract is thoroughly deserved, he adds a different dimension and I like the way he plays at full-back.

We complement each other well, I feel and when he’s in the team you can see the difference he makes.

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Laura Collins

Editor