Keighley Cougars v Hunslet RL Match Preview by Joshua Chapman (@JRCSport)
Date: Friday 14th April
Venue: Cougar Park, Keighley
After returning to winning ways with a rout of Hemel Stags last time out, the Cougars welcome Hunslet RL to Cougar Park for this season’s Good Friday fixture in Round Five of the Kingstone Press League One Campaign.
LAST TIME OUT:
Keighley Cougars strolled to their first win in a month as they defeated the Hemel Stags 6-84 at Pennine Way. Adam Ryder scored 4 tries on the afternoon whilst both Andy Gabriel and Brendon Rawlins scored hat-tricks. Further tries on the day came through Josh Tonks, James Feather, Ritchie Hawkyard, Brad Nicholson, Mike Emmett and Matty Beharrell, who also added 10 conversions.
Hunslet RL put South Wales Ironmen to the sword with a 58-6 victory in South Leeds. Captain George Flanagan led by example as he crossed for a hat-trick whilst there was also a brace for Jake Normington. Marcus Webb, Mufaro Mvududu, Aston Wilson and Brooke Broughton also crossed for James Coyle’s side whilst Joe Sanderson slotted over 9 times from the kicking tee.
Craig Lingard welcomes Will Milner (Concussion) and Josh Lynam (Illness) back into this 19 man squad but is still without Scott Law (Bicep). Fran Welsh (Back) is also ruled out through injury with Harry Aaronson and Liam Darville dropping otu the side. Emmerson Whittel (Jaw) is still Linners only long term injury doubt.
James Coyle will still have Ryan Ince available after the Widnes man extended his loan at the club this week. Marcus Webb (Hamstring) has been ruled out through injury meaning his place has been taken by Gavin Duffy who makes his first return to Cougar Park this Friday. Jose Kenga also comes into the 19 man squad.
Both sides can claim experience and leadership in their respective hooker and captains James Feather and George Flanagan. Both players have a similar style of play with quick hands and neither are afraid to break or burst through from the play the ball if required. The clash between the two is definitely one to keep an eye on at Cougar Park.
COUGARS: Bailey; Beharrell; Brook; Cherryholme; Conroy; Dixon; Emmett; Feather; Finigan; Gabriel; Hawkyard; Kelly; Lynam; Milner; Nicholson; Rawlins; Ryder; Sagar; Tonks.
HUNSLET: Ansell; Broughton; Carbutt; Duffy; Flangan; Flynn; Gibson; Hesketh; Ince; Kenga; Mackay; Mvududu; Normington; Reed; Sanderson; Tebb; Walton; Watson; Wilson.
Keighley Cougars Head Coach Craig Lingard: “Both teams are probably closely matched on paper and in a similar situation in that there are two new coaches and two new squads.
“I would imagine this is the sort of a game we need to win to get higher in the table come the end of the year, so even though it is early in the season it is going to be a big game for us.
“Knowing James Coyle, he likes to play right to the line and commit defenders. Whether he has got the players he’d like to play that game plan, I’m not 100 per cent sure.
“They are similar to us in that they are a bit of an unknown quantity. They are a new team, chopping and changing to find the right combination for them.”
Hunslet RL Head Coach James Coyle: ““Against South Wales, we fixed a few bits and pieces which we spoke about and a couple of individuals put in improved performances. Overall I was happy with what we did.
“We have a clean bill of health and a few played on Sunday who haven’t played for a while.
“Joe Sanderson came in and Matthew Tebb and Brooke Broughton played. I want to use the squad and that’s something I know I can do.
“I am happy with everybody we’ve got – there’s nobody I am worried about putting in the team.”
This Friday’s Referee for the Good Friday clash between League One’s West Yorkshire foes is Matthew Rossleigh from London. The Australian born official is officiating his second consecutive Cougars game on Friday after refereeing Sunday’s 6-84 away victory over the Hemel Stags at Pennine Way.
Clashes between the two are notoriously close affairs and Easter meetings between the two are traditionally played at the South Leeds Stadium adding a new dimention to this year’s meeting. Both teams are coming in of big wins over southern opposition at the weekend and neither have tinkered with their teams too much meaning it should be yet another tight clash. Four former Cougars in the Hunslet 19 also adds a bit of spice but you’d have to just fancy Keighley with home advantage. – COUGARS BY 6.