Championship preview: Featherstone v Whitehaven

Featherstone Rovers v Whitehaven (6.00)

Featherstone Rovers coach Jon Sharp saw a massive improvement from his side in their 38-28 defeat at Sheffield Eagles. “I was really pleased with some of the things we did against Leigh, particularly in the first half hour, we looked a bit more organised and thought we executed well,” he said. “There was a little bit of a tougher mentality from us as well.

“We went down 22-10 and the previous week we crumbled but last week we fought back and brought it right down to the wire. I was encouraged with the attitude of the team and the resilience I’d asked for the week before.

Looking ahead to the game against Whitehaven he said: “I think we need to start to build momentum and build on last week’s performance. We’ve improved from one week to the next and need to keep that improvement going. Players are playing for places as well. There’s a battle on within the club for places anyway and I’m encouraging competition and trying to create it by the signing of Steve Snitch and making a statement that we want to try and improve this team.”

Whitehaven have been struggling to find some form according to coach James Coyle: “The last two weeks we’ve really fallen away from where we’ve been at. Whether it’s confidence after the Workington game or a bit of tiredness and a few bodies breaking down a little bit at this part of the season.

“Dewsbury are one of the form teams and they played pretty well, they played quick and we couldn’t control the ruck.

“I’ll be looking at performance more than the result this week. I think we’ve got to get some momentum back going into the Championship Shield.”