Dewsbury Rams head coach Lee Greenwood has given us an update on injury news and loan situations.
Firstly on injury news, Greenwood said: “Paul Sykes recovery is going fine but we can’t rush him back with the type of injury he has and the way they treat it. He is getting on with his recovery and he’s doing everything right. He really looks after himself does Paul, there are not many people his age who have played as long as him and are still playing, and he’s not just playing for the sake of it but actually doing his job right.
“Also to be physically in that shape is great, I won’t go as far to say that he was playing in the form of his life, but he was doing pretty well before he got injured to be fair. I expect him to come back in good shape again and obviously he is getting closer and closer to that time. However I do think that the halfbacks did a good job against Widnes so that position isn’t too much of a worry.
“We have to be careful with Cam Leeming as he has fractured bones in his face, it isn’t just as simple as you breaking your arm and then just getting on with it. So we are treating that one carefully, he can’t do anything in training at all, not even running and it will take a while to heal, there is no real timescale for him to come back but we will see him again this season.
“Martyn Reilly is now in full training, it will take him a few weeks to get up to full fitness but once he is there then we will look at where he can get those games in.
“With Liam Johnson to be honest he might be back in full training come the end of the season, but I don’t expect him to play at all this year. It was a nasty injury that one and so we really have to play it smart and not rush him back just to see him run out in a shirt. He is not an old lad looking to retire, he’s a young lad and so we have to look at the years ahead too.
“Apart from that we just have a few knocks really, obviously we had a few guys out last week, Lucas Walshaw got injured at Leigh with his neck and Rob Worrincy was struggling for a few weeks but managed to get through things. Jode Sheriffe was also struggling with an elbow and forearm injury and so there were a few guys who got rested away at Widnes, because simply they probably couldn’t do a job and needed to recover. We made the right decision in not forcing them to play, with the amount of effort that was needed last weekend. So we do have a few bodies back now and obviously things don’t hurt as much when you have won away at Widnes.
On the loan situation Greenwood added: “The revolving door down at reception is working around the clock, and that won’t stop. We’ll put some oil in the hinges down there so it keeps turning around.
“It is a proper management job here not just a coaching role to look after every single individual. We are not after stock pilling players and we don’t have a reserves, so there are lads that need to be looked at and how they will get game time in. Not just for us but for themselves too, initially they need to keep themselves fit and then look to where they will go from there for the years ahead whether that be here or somewhere else. It is a bit of juggling act, we did start with a big squad but for differing reasons we have brought more people in since then.
“Looking at it, Toby Richardson was on loan at Coventry where he got some games in, which was better than not playing and just training for us. Harvey Hallas was in at Keighley where he performed well and has come back and is now playing for us so both those loans have worked out well. Lewis Heckford was at York on loan and has come back in good shape and is match fit and ready to go if called upon. Charlie Martin is now playing pretty regular at Hunslet which is great. Jacob Thomas was at Coventry on loan and is now playing at North Wales Crusaders where he’ll look to try and get some game time into that squad, and we’ll review that as we go along.
“We have had a few lads go out and get some game time in reserve match situations, so whilst all this isn’t ideal and I would have liked to have played a handful of our own reserve games this year, we know that we weren’t allowed to do that in the end and so we are just trying to make the best of the situation.
“On the incoming’s, some lads have been called back to their respective clubs, and have now played for their Super League clubs which shows we are doing something right. Owen Trout and Muiz Mustapha have both returned to Leeds and have since played there, and Chris Annakin has returned to Wakefield as well. All those have played pretty well when they have returned to there clubs which is good to see.
“However we have still got those players who we have brought in on loan still with us, including Luke Hooley (Wakefield), Callum Field and Sammy Kibula (Wigan Warriors) and Ellis Robson (Warrington Wolves).
“We just have to make sure we keep on top of it all, we are only doing what we think is right for the club.”