GLENN Morrison believes Wakefield Wildcats will take a little longer to hit their peak this season than their Super League rivals, writes Nick Rigg.
John Kear, Wakefield’s head coach, saw his squad undergo big changes following the start of the 2011 campaign and following the purchase of the club by Andrew Glover.
Wildcats saw three players - Sam Obst, Dale Ferguson and Daryl Millard - sold by administrators before swooping to bolster their squad with four new additions following the season opener against Castleford Tigers.
Josh Griffin and Greg Johnson both signed after being released from Huddersfield Giants, while Kyle Amor and Craig Harvey penned loan deals from Leeds Rhinos and Warrington Wolves respectively.
Only Kyle Amor featured as a replacement in last weekend’s 32-6 home defeat against Salford City Reds.
But Morrison, who returns to his former club Bradford Bulls as captain of the Wildcats on Sunday, is confident things will start coming together for the Wildcats.
“We had a good win over in France and a bit of a slip up at the weekend but we’ve learnt from that,” he said.
“We’ve got some new personnel coming in and I think we’re growing each week so we’ll be going there (to Bradford) hoping that we’ve got our game together to get the win.”
He continued: “Most of the clubs have had a full pre-season together.
“We’ve got players that are probably going to play this weekend that have only had two training runs with us, so it is going to take a little bit of time until we gel and get to know how we all play, but you can’t afford to throw too many games away so hopefully we’re learning fast,”
Morrison, who is out of contract with Wakefield at the end of the season, was disappointed with last weekend’s loss against Salford.
But he’s hoping the close-knit squad at Belle Vue reap the rewards of the hard work and effort that is being shown on the pitch in training.
“It’s disappointing but I think the effort was there but the main thing was probably a lack of skill at times which let us down.
“So long as we’ve got the effort there and everybody’s wanting to play for each other I think that’s half the battle won so I think we’ll be all right this week.
He added: “It’s probably not the easiest start but as I’ve said before I think we’ve got a great bunch of boys here and it has bonded us closer together.
“The club kept me informed of what was going on (during administration and the takeover) so I could relay it back to the boys.
“We all knew that we were going to get paid so our job was to train hard and get ready to play and we’ve been doing that and that’s all we could worry about, now we just need to start winning some games.”
Sunday’s trip to Odsal is that bit special for Morrison due to his connections with the club.
The second row spent three years with the Bulls before making the switch to the Merrie City.
“You always like to play against your old teams, you have a bit of a lift,” he said.
“I still keep in touch with them all. The fans there were great for me too, they still stop me in the street and have a chat so hopefully I’ll get a clap and not a ‘boo’ when I get on the pitch.
“They’re another side that are going to take time to gel. They’ve bought some great players, the people they’ve bought in are quality and they’re looking to get back up as a top four side.
“When you’ve got so much turnover it’s going to take a few weeks before you gel so hopefully we can get them on a day when they’re not quite there.”
See tomorrow’s Wakefield Express Sport for all the latest Wildcats news.