Rovers await Toulouse showdown

Featherstone Rovers chief executive Martin Vickers has pledged to do all he can to “unlock the potential,” revealed by the club’s 1895 Cup triumph at Wembley.

Super League hopefuls Rovers are preparing for Sunday’s big home Championship showdown with equally-ambitious Toulouse, in what could well prove to be a dress rehearsal for the promotion play-off final.

It’s Featherstone’s first game at their Millennium Stadium home since their final win over York.

Now that restrictions on the number of spectators have been lifted they are hoping for a bumper turn-out after more than 2,000 of their followers went to Wembley.

“I always said getting to the 1895 Cup final would provide a platform for the rest of this season, and I think the whole experience showed just what we have at this club already, and what we could have going forward,” said Vickers.

Coach James Webster and a number of players missed the final through Covid-related issues (assistant coach Paul March took charge), and Vickers added: “We had to pull out all the stops to be able to put out a side, and thankfully, we managed it.

“I think that underlines the ambition of the club and you only had to be in Featherstone to see the team leave for Wembley to realise what support there is.

“Since the final, Paul March has had the trophy in local schools, and we’ve also visited businesses and gone into the community, and the response has been brilliant.

“People might label us a club from a small town, but we have an catchment area of more than 100,000 to go at, and there is a solid commitment to Rugby League within that number.

“This club really is established within the community, we have a well-developed stadium and a team which is doing its part with their performances on the pitch.

“We know there is a long way to go and that nothing is settled, and on Sunday, we face a very good team in Toulouse.

“But we want to get to Super League, and my job is to help ensure that if we do get there, it is as a sustainable top-flight club.”

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