Duffy plotting old club’s downfall in opening clash

Featherstone's new head coach John Duffy.
Featherstone's new head coach John Duffy.

FEATHERSTONE’S new boss John Duffy aims to put one over his old club Leigh Centurions in Saturday’s opening Qualifiers fixture at LD Nutrition Stadium (3.15pm kick-off)

Scotland assistant coach Duffy made more than 200 appearances for Leigh in three spells with the club.

He then joined the Centurions coaching staff in 2012 before he was appointed Swinton’s head coach two years later.

The 37-year-old believes Featherstone can pull off an upset this weekend after their narrow defeat at Toulouse in his first game in charge in the final game in the regular season.

“This team is capable of getting off to a great start in the Qualifiers,” he said.

Duffy has already claimed one Super League scalp this year. He masterminded Swinton’s shock 28-24 win at Huddersfield Giants in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup fifth round in April.

Rovers lost all seven games in the Qualifiers last year.

Like this season, they started their Qualifiers campaign with a Saturday home match that was televised live on Sky TV when they played Leed Rhinos.

Featherstone lost that game 62-6 and were then beaten by Huddersfield (62-16), Leigh (30-18), Batley (11-10), Salford (70-16), Hull KR (32-24) and London (46-6).

Three of last season’s Qualifiers fixtures are repeated this year with home games against Leigh and Hull KR and a trip to London.