Hull KR retain Donaldson

Hull Kingston Rovers have fended off interest from Australian clubs to retain forward James Donaldson for the 2017 season in the Kingstone Press Championship.

The former England Knights international was handed a new one-year deal with a further one-year option by the Robins in June and has agreed to uphold the same terms from next season despite approaches from sides Down Under.

The 25-year-old back rower has scored four tries in 47 appearances for Rovers and he’ll link up with head coach Tim Sheens’ squad for pre-season training in early November.

Head of Rugby Jamie Peacock said: “James is a very consistent performer for us each week and he’s able to play through the middle or in the back row, which makes him a really useful player to have in the squad.

“Defensively, he’s very strong and he never leaves anything out on the field. That’s the sort of effort and commitment we want from our players, whilst off the field James is very professional in how he conducts himself and trains throughout the week.

“We’re pleased that he’s agreed to stay on board for next season. The squad is starting to take shape but we’re still working hard behind the scenes on further recruitment and retention for 2017.”