Mallinson getting Rovers players in shape

Featherstone's head of strength and conditioning Bill Mallinson.
Featherstone's head of strength and conditioning Bill Mallinson.

Bill Mallinson is aiming to make sure that Featherstone’s players hit the ground running when the new Championship campaign kicks off in February.

Ex-Hull FC hooker Mallinson joined Featherstone as head of strength and conditioning 12 months ago after having a similar role at both Hull FC and Hull KR.

He has been putting the squad - including new signings Keal Carlile, Michael Knowles, Chris Ulugia and Richard Moore - through their paces since pre-season training started on October 31.

“The coaches need the new players in early so show them all the tactics and whatever but it’s great for me as well because it will give me a little bit more time to work with them,” said Mallinson.

“I will find out a little bit about them and they’ll find out about me.

“We are doing all different types of things like combat sessions and commando rolling. It’s really tough but it’s got to be done.

“Obviously, some of them are coming into training from work so they are a bit tired anyway so we’ve got to try to instil a bit of discipline.

“We make sure they are doing their pre-work before they even start and then we start to warm up a little bit and hopefully put a smile on their face before they go home.”

Mallinson believes the hard work in pre-season training is vital ahead of the warm-up matches which start with a Boxing Day trip to Halifax.

“If you start off strongly in your pre-season friendlies it gets you up to the right intensity for the start of the season,” he added.

“Before you know it, the pre-season games are gone and then it gets really tough and we’ll be looking for the two points every week.”