Chester happy with Hull KR’s preseason progress

Hull KR coach Chris Chester is pleased with the togetherness and application of his squad, as he looks to integrate a host of new signings into his plans.

There have been 12 new faces added to the group in the close-season, and most of them are now knuckling down to the serious business of preseason.

“Training is going alright. We have got a few more numbers down now so the intensity has again stepped up,” Chester told the Hull Daily Mail.

“We’re going okay. I’ve been really impressed by the attitude we’ve shown, especially the players coming in like Ryan [Bailey]and Tyrone [McCarthy].

“What I’ve noticed this year, perhaps more than any other year, is the togetherness already amongst the boys.

“The lads are going out for coffee and meals as a group together after training, and not going off in little cliques, which is really good. I’m pleased by that togetherness we’re developing.”

Meanwhile, Rovers are still in the hunt for a new hooker, despite bringing French prospect John Boudebza to the club recently.

Their ideal candidate is an NRL player with a European passport who will not take up an overseas quota spot on their roster.

Utilty back Ben Cockayne, however, has suffered a recurrence of the ankle injury he suffered in training last season.

The torn ligament in the player’s ankle has required another minor operation, though he is expected to be fit for the start of the season.

Italian international full-back Josh Mantellato will arrive in Hull at the end of this week, with Luke Kelly and Albert Blair expected to arrive in the next fortnight or so.

“Ben has suffered a setback and will probably be a week or two behind the rest of the lads,” Chester said.

“We’re hopeful he will be ready for our pre-season games, but he will definitely be back for round one of Super League.”

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