Ford expects stern Parkside test

Published: 4 January, 2019 - 4:30 pm

By Joe Smith

James Ford is looking forward to the Knights’ second pre-season outing and their first in the revamped Yorkshire Cup competition. Tomorrow sees York face leading amateur outfit Hunslet Club Parkside in a double-header at Dewsbury Rams’ Tetleys Stadium and the head coach is looking forward to welcoming back some of his experienced players back into the fold – including those absent against Bradford Bulls on Boxing Day.

“Horney [Graeme Horne] will definitely feature as will Ben Cockayne. Harry Carter will also be involved if he comes through training this week. Everyone we have available will be getting a run tomorrow,” he explained, the trio having missed out on the Bradford match. Joe Porter, however, is still recovering from an injury sustained in that match. “Joe Porter got a knee knock and the initial diagnosis wasn’t too negative but it hasn’t quite settled down yet. We’re going to have a look at it this week but he definitely won’t feature on Saturday. Mike Kelly is also a couple of weeks away,” Ford told the club’s official site, the forward recovering from a groin strain, before adding that club captain Tim Spears is also set to miss Saturday’s game but that the forward is back training with the team – “it’s probably a week to early for him to play.”

Trialists Dave Petersen and Reece Rushworth will, however, be involved and Ford has been suitably impressed with the pair. Speaking of the former Hull KR and Bradford player, the Knights’ head coach remarked that “we’ve been really impressed with Dave and what he has shown in training. He has really bought into our values and philosophies as a club and he acquitted himself really well on Boxing Day in two vital positions at hooker and loose-forward,” he explained. “He embodies a lot of what we are about in terms of effort, never giving in and working as hard as he can for his team mates.” Reece Rushworth is set for another outing after his debut in his home city’s colours was cut short after suffering a head wound at Bradford and Ford is keen to see what the York Acorn product has to offer.

Of how the team are set to approach the fixture against Hunslet Club Parkside, Ford was under no illusions as to the challenge they pose. “We will approach the game in the same manner we approach every other and we will have to be better than we were on Boxing Day. Hunslet are a good side and I’ve watched them on a number of occasions,” he explained, adding that the team have talented players in their ranks.

“Craig McShane, Jamie Field and Liam Thompson just to name a few. They are good players and there will certainly be no complacency from us tomorrow – but they will fancy their chances against us,” he added.

York City Knights take on Hunslet Club Parkside at Tetley’s Stadium, Dewsbury in the first round of the Yorkshire Cup tomorrow (Saturday, 5th January) kicking off at 1pm. Admission on the day is £15 Adults, £10 Concessions and free for u16’s.