Kain in line for Rovers first-team comeback

Andy Kain missed the start of the season with a groin injury. Picture: Bobb Nunn.
Andy Kain missed the start of the season with a groin injury. Picture: Bobb Nunn.

Andy Kain could make his Featherstone Rovers first-team comeback in tomorrow’s (Sunday) Kingstone Press Championship game against Rochdale Hornets at Big Fellas Stadium.

The 28-year-old half-back or hooker, who has missed the start of the season with a groin injury, had a run out in last week’s under 20s match at Leigh Centurions.

Featherstone’s squad for tomorrow’s game is Hardman, Mendeika, Uaisele, Sharp, Hellewell, Worthington, Briggs, Bussey, Moore, Kain, Flanagan, Ellis, Crossley, Dale, Lockwood, Spears, Hirst, Bostock and Roche.

Rovers coach John Bastian said: “Andy Kain did well and I was really pleased with his effort and some of his skill set. His energy levels were very good.

“To be fair to him, he’s really knuckled down in training for the last three months. He’ll come into consideration for the game against Rochdale as will some other players.

“Some players do need a game and there will be times when I pull a player out and I rotate. For the players that go in, it’s then up to them to perform to a really good standard.

“We want the players to be competitive and we want them performing week in week out but from time to time I will pull a player out and drop someone else in that I think needs a match.”

Stand-off Kyle Briggs made his first senior appearance for 10 months in last weekend’s game at North Wales Crusaders when winger Will Sharp grabbed three tries and scrum-half Gareth Moore scored a try and kicked six goals in a 36-6 win.

“I was delighted for Kyle Briggs,” added Bastian.

“He’s had 10 months out and he’s worked so hard to get himself back into the shape he is. He was very good in parts of Sunday’s game and he did the full 80 minutes.”

“Kyle probably lacks a bit of sharpness in areas but that will come over the next few games.

“Kyle is a natural half-back and he has probably taken a bit of pressure off Gaz Moore.

“I thought Gaz was very good in the second-half and I thought they complemented each other and I was delighted with that combination.

“Will Sharp is scoring some cracking tries and he’s enjoying himself. He’s doing things with a smile in training and he’s doing it when we are playing as well and you want that.

“I’d give credit as well to the half-backs, the back-rowers and the centres to create those opportunities for the winger. We were quite dominant on own right hand side and certainly Greg Worthington has been doing some really strong stuff along with James Lockwood on the left side as well.”

Etu Uaisele and Colton Roche both made their Rovers debuts at Wrexham last Sunday and Bastian was pleased with the performances of both players.

“Etu looks very strong, powerful and dynamic and he’s got good skill,” he added.

“He’s only been here a fortnight and he’s a bit rusty but I think we’ll see some real quality stuff from Etu this year.

“Colton was very dynamic with his carries and gave us some great go forward and good speed. Technically, he’s got to work on his defence and he’s aware of that. If we can get that right we’ve got a very good front/back rower there.”