Things looking up for Robins

Coach Tony Smith reckons Hull KR have made three important moves by signing London Broncos prop Greg Richards and agreeing one-year contract extensions with experienced back Ben Crooks and versatile Jimmy Keinhorst.

Former St Helens and Leigh Centurions man Richards, 26, has signed a one-year deal with the option of a further twelve months.

“He’s coming into his prime with a wealth of experience,” said Smith.

“He had great experience as a young prop in winning a Grand Final with St Helens and it’s a chance for him to get his Super League career back on track.

“He’s very skilful. He can pass the ball, he’s got a good work rate and his knowledge of the game is comprehensive, so he will add more depth and competition for places to our squad.”

Former Hull and Castleford Tigers player Richards joined from Leigh in 2019 and has made a big contribution this year, with Rovers, who visit Leeds Rhinos on Friday, chasing a play-off spot.

Germany international Keinhorst, 31, moved from Leeds in 2019 as a centre, but has more recently featured as a second row or winger.

Smith said: “I really enjoy working with Ben. He’s a wholehearted player. Every time  he  enters the field, he  gives  it his  all.

“He’s always trying to improve, and he’s always willing and happy to put his hand up wherever he’s needed.

“Jimmy is an experienced, versatile player. He’s a really good club man, happy to help others, even if he’s not selected in the team.”

Rovers, who recently agreed contract extensions with halfback Rowan Milnes (to 2025) and forward Matty Storton (to 2024), have caught the eye by landing star Australian fullback Lachlan Coote from St Helens on a two-year deal to start next season.

Huddersfield Giants’ utility back Sam Wood is heading to Rovers on a one-year contract.

A with Richards, they have also dipped into the lower leagues to bring in Featherstone Rovers second rower Frankie Halton, Dewsbury Rams prop Tom Garratt and Keighley Cougars’ highly-rated teenage fullback Phoenix Laulu-Togaga’e, all on deals until 2023.

Centre Greg Minikin is moving to Warrington Wolves.

Smith is hopeful that, should his side make the play-offs, forward George Lawler will have recovered from a thumb injury to be available.

The Robins won the Roger Millward Trophy on Saturday by beating Castleford Tigers.

The Hall of Fame legend was a star with both clubs during his playing days.

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