LEEDS RHINOS’ two Championship recruits will have a second crack at Wakefield Trinity tomorrow – in the colours of Featherstone Rovers.
Half-back Cory Aston and forward Jack Ormondroyd will both play for Rovers on dual-registration after featuring in Rhinos’ opening two trial games – including the 30-6 loss to Wakefield on Boxing Day.
Ormondroyd made 30 appearances for Rovers last season before moving to Leeds and was Rhinos’ only try scorer in the Christmas fixture.
Featherstone boss Jon Sharp said: “I’m looking forward to seeing Jack play and to seeing how he has progressed in a full-time environment.
“I’m looking forward to seeing some of the rough edges he has not being there any more. I’m sure full-time training will have knocked those off.”
Leeds signed Aston from Sheffield Eagles, who are among Rovers’ fiercest rivals in the Kingstone Press Championship.
“I’m looking forward to seeing Cory in the halves with Anthony Thackeray and Matt Wildie,” the coach added.
“His kicking game is going to be invaluable to us and I’m sure an off-season with Leeds has done him a world of good.”
Rovers have won their opening three pre-season games, but Sharp said facing Super League opposition is a “whole different ball game”.
He said: “I don’t think we’ll be racking tries up and defending our line as easily this week against a strong squad, which Wakefield are sending.
“It will be a different type of performance, more dogged and determined from us and maybe a bit more conservative. It will be a different type of test for us.”
Trinity also have a 100 per cent record after three trial games, but coach Chris Chester said his players still have some questions to answer.
“I am going with a strong squad,” he said of tomorrow’s derby. “Originally I was going to go with a few kids, but I’ve still not made my mind up about my strongest 17.
“I’ve got a good idea of my strongest 13, but I’ll use the next two weeks to sort out the bench.”
Mason Caton-Brown, Jacob Miller, Craig Huby, Mikey Sio, Tinirau Arona, Ben Jones-Bishop, Liam Flynn, Joe Arundel, Anthony Walker, James Batchelor and Jordan Crowther will all back up from last Sunday’s 32-20 win over Castleford Tigers.
“Chubs [Huby] came through okay last week,” Chester said of the prop’s return from injury. “He played 40 minutes and he’ll get another run this Sunday and probably against Sheffield in our final pre-season game.
“We’ll use the next two games to get some minutes into the guys who’ve missed a lot of footy over the last few weeks.
“Milky [Miller] will get another run. He’s only played once in six or seven months and he’s a bit rusty, so hopefully we’ll get some more minutes into him.”
Anthony England – hurt in the win at Leeds – will return tomorrow, but Mitch Allgood (concussion) won’t be risked.
Featherstone Rovers: from Bostock, Thackeray , Tagg, Aston, Griffin, Hardman, Ormondroyd, Duckworth, Kitchen, Walton, Davies, Hardcastle, Carlile, Briggs, Johnson, Wildie, Knowles, Briscoe, Cooper, Moore, Day, Turner.
Wakefield Trinity: from Ackroyd, Annakin, Arundel, Arona, Batchelor, Caton-Brown, Crowther, England, Finn, Gibson, Huby, Jones-Bishop, Kershaw, Mazive, Miller, Moules, Senior, Sio, Walker, Yorke.
Referee: S Race.
Kick-off: Tomorrow, 3pm.