New Wakefield Trinity Wildcats head coach Chris Chester believes the squad he has inherited is capable of retaining their Super League place for 2017.
Chester departed from Hull Kingston Rovers three weeks ago after an inconsistent start to Rovers season, but was appointed as head coach of his hometown club Wakefield this week.
The 37 year-old has already expressed his delight at joining the club and says it was an easy choice for him to get back into coaching and he cannot wait.
“It’s a team that I supported as a young kid, I was a season ticket holder and I know what this club is all about and the tradition behind it so it was a very easy decision for myself,” Chester said in his first press conference with the club.
“I’d certainly got fed up of being at home! I’d had three weeks doing a hell of a lot of housework and I had recharged my batteries and got away for a bit so I’m ready for the challenge. I’ve been travelling to Hull na dback for 15 years now so this is nice to be working on my doorstep.”
Chester will be joined at Wakefield by ex-head coach of the Wildcats John Kear, who will take up the role of Head of Rugby in 2017, and Chester says he is looking forward to working with Kear.
“I’ve got a lot of respect for John, we go back a hell of a long way,” he said.
“He was an academy coach when I was playing and we’ve kept in touch ever since and I’m looking forward to working with him. He’s got a lot of experience and would be great to working with him.”
Wakefield have struggled in the early part of the 2016 season under Brian Smith, with just one win from six games, but Chester is adamant that the squad is good enough to stay up in the top flight.
“You’ve got a squad of 31 here, and probably the biggest one in the competition,” he said.
“We’ve got a pretty fit and healthy squad which is important come the Easter period. There is some movement in terms of bringing a player in, looking both here and overseas to add that big of quality, but it’ll take a little bit of time.
“I think the squad is certainly capable of surviving, it’s a very good squad and it’s a thick squad and a healthy one at the minute. We’ll try and add a bit of quality but if we don’t I’m more than happy with what we’ve got available. I’m just looking forward to the challenge of coaching this side and the signs I’ve seen has been pretty positive.
“We just need a win and that’ll breed confidence. There’s no easy games in super league and under no illusions how tough it’ll be. We know where we’re sat in the table but doing our best to make sure we climb that table and we’ve got a big month coming up.”