Bradford Bulls head coach Francis Cummins has confirmed three of his absent stars will make their comeback against Hull Kingston Rovers this weekend.
Chief amongst them is centre Matty Blythe, who is yet to feature for the club in 2014 after suffering a hand injury during pre-season training. He will provide much needed strike power for the Bulls, with Cummins admitting they have missed Blythe.
“It’s a massive boost; we’re a young side as it is so to get someone back with plenty of experience is a real bonus for us,” Cummins said.
“We’ve missed him; and it is really good to have him back because it’s been a frustrating time for him.”
The Bulls operated with just one recognised prop last time out, but they welcome Anthony Mullally and Adam Sidlow back into the fray this weekend, with Cummins relieved to get some bodies back in a difficult time for the club.
“Adam Sidlow will play this week, and obviously Anthony Mullally is back for us too, so we’ve finally got some forwards to get out on the pitch.”
This weekend’s opponents are Hull Kingston Rovers, who will include former Bull Jamie Langley in their side. Cummins admitted he was a fantastic influence on the club, and that despite a slow start from the Rovers in 2014, they have had a tougher start than most.
“When Jamie joined the club was arguably one of the biggest in the worlds, but he was a great influence for the club all the way through his time here. He’s influenced the next generation of players towards the end of his stay here, too.
“They’ve had a tough start and played some tough teams. THEY were probably a bit frustrated with their performance against Castleford when they weren’t up there at their best.
“But they have scored some good tries so far this season, and they have had some big sides rocking so far this campaign. They’ll be looking to get some sort of rhythm together – as will we.”
Blythe and Mullally come in for Luke George (injured) and Chev Walker (suspended). Youngster Sam Wood has also made the 19-man squad, stepping in for Alex Mellor.
Bradford 19-man squad to face Hull KR (Sunday, 3pm): Addy, Blythe, Bridge, Diskin, Donaldson, Foster, Gale, Kear, Kearney, Henry, O’Brien, Manuokafoa, Mullally, Olbison, Purtell, Roberts, Sutcliffe, Sidlow, Wood.