Chester happy with pre-season

Chris Chester says pre-season training has provided a useful glimpse of the future for Wakefield’s players and coaching staff alike.

Trinity’s head coach and his new assistants Willie Poching and Andy Last have been putting the squad through their paces on neighbours Dewsbury’s 4G training pitch.

Wakefield hope to instal a similar surface as part of a major redevelopment of their Mobile Rocket Stadium home.

The planning application for the project, which also includes the erection of a new 2,500-seater stand and a terrace renovation, is currently being considered by Wakefield Council planners.

It’s hoped the pitch, which will be used for both training and matches, can be installed at the end of this campaign.

“Training has gone well on the 4G, and while you have to alter things a little to allow for the surface, the positive is that you don’t get as badly affected by the weather,” says Chester.

“There has only been one occasion when we have had to cancel a session, because of the sudden arrival of heavy snow.

“The experience of using the 4G this time will be really useful for both us as coaches and the players going forward.”

Wakefield are optimistic about getting the green light to update their historic home, which dates back to the 19th century, by June.

If work progresses to schedule, the new-look stadium will be ready by the start of the 2023 season, 150 years since the club’s formation.

Meanwhile Chester, whose side hosted Dewsbury in a pre-season game on Sunday, registering a 30-10 victory, says he’s enjoying working with Poching and Last.

Former Trinity forward Poching has moved from Hull KR, where he was assistant to Tony Smith.

Last has moved after a 23-year stint, initially as a player, at Hull, where he spent the bulk of last season as interim head coach.

“I go back a long way with both of them, having been coached by Andy at Hull and working with Willie at Hull KR,” adds Chester.

“They both bring different strengths, and we are working as well together as I thought we would.

“There’s a real togetherness about the group, and the players have bought into some of the changes we have made to the way we are doing things.”

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