Sharp: All the pressure on table-toppers Hull KR

Rovers coach Jon Sharp: "We are under no illusions how difficult the task is on Friday."
Rovers coach Jon Sharp: "We are under no illusions how difficult the task is on Friday."

FEATHERSTONE coach Jon Sharp believes all the pressure will be on unbeaten Championship leaders Hull Kingston Rovers in tomorrow’s clash at Craven Park (3pm).

Hull KR, relegated from Super League last season, have won all their nine league matches this season, scoring 386 points and conceding only 128.

They won 32-24 at Big Fellas Stadium last September in the Super 8s but were pushed all the way by Featherstone.

“Hull KR are the best team in the competition by a long way. They look a different level,” said Sharp.

“With their playing roster and how they are playing, they are an outstanding team.

“We had a crack at them in the Super 8s last season and I thought we were unlucky not to come away with anything that day. I thought we played extremely well.

“We are now a different team and they certainly are.

“We are under no illusions how difficult the task is on Friday.

“We will be massive underdogs but all the pressure is them.

“There will be massive expectancy on their team to beat us and there is no expectancy on us so the pressure is off us.”

Featherstone’s second Easter fixture is against Bradford Bulls at Big Fellas Stadium on Monday.

Sharp does not think Featherstone’s 21-13 win at Bradford last month in the Challenge Cup fourth round will count for anything when the sides meet again.

“We made eight changes for the cup game at Bradford. We’ll be fielding a different side to the one that played that day and Bradford will be doing the same,” added Sharp.

The Rovers boss was delighted with his side’s display in last weekend’s 38-18 home win over top-four rivals London when first-team skipper Misi Taulapapa made his first appearance this season after being given visa clearance.

“I thought we nailed it in the first-half. We completed at a high rate and played smart and scored some good tries. We also defended well against a good attacking team,” he said.

“In the second-half, I thought we were excellent with the ball.”

Featherstone’s side against Londonn Bronncos last Sunday included dual-registered Leeds Rhinos props Jordan Baldwinson and Mikolaj Oledzki but Sharp does not expect to be given any Leeds players for his side’s Easter matches.

“I don’t think we’ll get anyone over Easter - we didn’t last year,” he said.

“Leeds have a tough Easter programme and they will need all hands on deck.”