Hull coach hails Crooks and Lineham

Hull FC coach Peter Gentle has hailed Ben Crooks and Tom Lineham, after the young three-quarter duo were named in the 2013 Dream Team.

The two youngsters have impressed this season, and Gentle is sure that they both have a great career ahead of them, if they continue to show a positive attitude.

“We’ve known all about the talent that those two possess for a while,” the coach told Love Rugby League.

“These two kids come in very day with a spring in their step, wanting to better themselves every day. They want to achieve things, they’re a pleasure to coach.

“If they can stay grounded, which they are at the moment, and keep working hard, then the sky’s the limit.”

Lineham’s rise to prominence is especially remarkable, given that he was first scouted by York City Knights from the 15-man code.

“He started out with York RUFC, before the Knights quickly saw his potential while he was at York College.” Gentle explained.

“We identified him while he was his second season in the Knights academy, and negotiated a contract for him. The first time I saw him play, we put pen to paper quickly and got him the full-time squad.

“He got a few games in last year, which was great. He’s still learning the game, believe it or not.

“He’s got speed to burn. Unfortunately, him and Crooksie are both injured at the moment. We’ve missed them.

“For them to make the Dream Team and both be out at this stage of the year, it’s difficult for them.”

The Hull coach is also optimistic that there will be more local youngsters in the first team at the KC Stadium soon, too, as the club’s youth development policies begin to bear fruit.

“We’ve put a lot of time, effort and money into having our Under-19s academy at the cutting edge,” he explained.

“We’ve got a lot of very good people involved, both coaching and support staff. And also at the top level, the players and staff from the first team are doing a lot of work nurturing the talent.

“That’s where the future lies. We don’t want to be buying people every year to fill holes. We’ve got a special group of Under-16s coming through, so it does look good for the future.

“The plan is, down the track, to have 13 or 14 homegrown stars running out each week, and just buying one or two players to come in and supplement that.”

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