Ridyard set to return for Featherstone’s trip to Batley

Martyn Ridyard is set to make his Rovers return at Batley. Picture: Dec Hayes.
Martyn Ridyard is set to make his Rovers return at Batley. Picture: Dec Hayes.

FEATHERSTONE Rovers are set to welcome back playmaker Martyn Ridyard but they will be without centre Misi Taulapapa for Sunday’s Betfred Championship game at Batley Bulldogs.

Ridyard missed Tuesday night’s Challenge Cup win against North Wales Crusaders but coach John Duffy said: “Martyn is fine. We just thought we’d keep him away and get him ready for the weekend.”

Taulapapa has been ruled out of Sunday’s game because of one-match ban.

He played in Tuesday’s cup tie because the suspension did not come into effect until yesterday.

After beating North Wales, Featherstone will aim to continue the excellent start that has seen them win five of their first six league games.

They are level on points at the top of the table with London Broncos and Toulouse Olympique.

Batley are in seventh place with two victories from four games.

Duffy was pleased with Tuesday’s victory in which winger Luke Briscoe scored four tries and captain Ian Hardman took his points tally for Featherstone past the 600 mark and became the club’s fourth all-time top try scorer.

“I hope Luke keeps on scoring. He has been phenomenal for us since the start of the season and he is happy with where he is and I am happy with where he is. He has been consistent with everything he does,” added Duffy.

“I was really chuffed for Ian Hardman. Obviously, he has been a stalwart at the club for quite a few years.

“He passed 600 points for the clubs which is massive for him.

“He’s been an absolutely brilliant player for Featherstone and continues to be so.

“He reaps the rewards for all the hard work he puts in.”

Duffy was also pleased with Shaun Robinson and half-backs Tom Holmes and Matty Wildie and debutant Danny Maskill.

“Matty Wildie stood in there - he’s done it before - and guided us around the pitch a bit. I thought Tom Holmes stood up in the second-half and took control really well and put some good plays on for us.

“I thought Shaun Robinson was superb as well.

“We gave a debut to Danny Maskill who came on and did a fantastic job for us.”