Dewsbury Rams v Featherstone Rovers: Derby rivals are keen to put down a marker
BOTH TEAMS will be aiming to put a marker down for the new campaign when Dewsbury Rams host Betfred Championship rivals Featherstone Rovers in the pre-season Yorkshire Cup today (3.30pm).
Rovers will be strengthened by dual-registered Leeds Rhinos forwards Josh Walters and Jack Ormondroyd, along with Dan Waite-Pullan who played in last week’s 56-6 defeat at Castleford Tigers.
John Davies is available after suspension and acting-coach Paul March said: “We do want to put a marker down because they are another Championship team, but we are still going to have five trialists in there.
“Ryan [Carr, Rovers’ new coach] is due to arrive by Thursday or Friday next week at the earliest, or Monday the week after at the latest.
“The Papua New Guinea lads are due to be here on the 10th and hopefully Ryan can make a couple more signings before the start of the season.
“Scott Wheeldon and Brett Delaney are still out injured so we’ve got plenty of numbers to come in, but we want to get some games under the young lads’ belts so they can show myself and Ryan what they can do if we need them later in the season.”
Despite the scoreline last week, March felt there were things to build on.
He added: “There were loads of positives to take out of it, one of them being our middles got plenty of game time and I think we will be better for that.”
Today will be Rams coach Lee Greenwood’s first home game in charge of Dewsbury.
They lost 16-10 at Batley Bulldogs on Boxing Day and he said: “The pleasing thing about that game and this one is I can give everybody a run against Championship opposition.
“Featherstone are also in a bit of transition and I’m sure the team [today] won’t be the one we play in the league, but it’s a Championship club and a good test to see where we’re at.
“I want players to put their hand up and show they’re capable of playing at this level.
“It gives people a chance to stake a claim, some of them looked decent against Batley and some were a bit off.”
Greenwood insisted: “We do want to win.
“I won’t be making decisions just to win the game, but we are going in it to win.”