London Broncos in market for new signing after yet another injury blow

LONDON BRONCOS are in the market for a new signing after receiving yet more bad injury news, with prop Lewis Bienek to be sidelined long-term with his ankle issue.

The Broncos opened the season with a heavy defeat at St Helens on Friday, with a slim squad already stretched to its limit by injuries.

Bill Leyland will miss the whole year with a knee injury and Josh Rourke will be sidelined for much of it with a broken leg.

Now former Hull FC and Castleford forward Bienek will also be out for a lengthy period after his syndesmosis injury proved to be severe, with surgery required over the weekend.

“The scans came back worse than what we thought from a tackle against Huddersfield and he’ll be gone for ten weeks,” said coach Mike Eccles.

“Lewis is a huge blow for us. We’ve got to get our heads around that and see if we can possibly do some business. 

“I said I didn’t want to do anything short-term but we’re probably going to have to get some cover in there now in terms of the middle.”

While their pack is also missing Ethan Natoli due to a broken wrist, London should have some relief soon in the backs with Jarred Bassett to return for Friday’s visit of Catalans following an ankle issue and Alex Walker close to his comeback from a groin issue.

With last season’s Grand Finalists next, things don’t get any easier for the Broncos after a chastening Super League return against the world champions.

“We spoke all week about not giving them anything, and we conceded six ‘negatives’ – penalties or six-agains,” rued Eccles after the St Helens loss.

“Things like markers not square, that was rubbish. I’m really upset about that because we spoke all week about It. I’m going to come down hard on that. 

“If you do that against St Helens in their own backyard, you’re going to get blown away. I’m really disappointed with that stuff. And if you do that, you’ve got to defend your line. You can’t just concede. 

“They’re not super-negative learns, we’ve just got to get up to speed quickly. We all expected that.”

Eccles hopes to see their new-look spine of new signings Jack Campagnolo and James Meadows improve over time.

“You look at how we finished the year and that’s three different players,” he said.

“There are two new halves and now a new fullback as well, who isn’t a fullback – I thought Oli Leyland was fantastic, by the way.

“We’re trying to build something but the two halves that are in place, that’s a brand-new combination. That will take time.”