Wakefield recruitment update as Mark Applegarth eyes up further additions

Drew Darbyshire
Mark Applegarth Wakefield Trinity SWpix

Photo: Allan McKenzie/SWpix

Wakefield coach Mark Applegarth says they are hoping to make more loan signings, but admits it has been more difficult to recruit than in previous years.

Trinity have been unlucky with injuries so far this season, forcing them to bring in reinforcements such as Sam Hewitt and Innes Senior on loan.

Wakefield suffered a long-term injury to key full-back Max Jowitt earlier this season, which prompted them to make a swap deal with Hull KR, which saw full-back Will Dagger come to Belle Vue, with centre Corey Hall going the other way.

When asked about more potential recruits, Applegarth said: “Just speaking to a couple of clubs mainly with loan deals just to add to the squad and not takeaway from the squad.

“As you can appreciate, I think clubs are wary that we are six games in coming into seven, that they might start picking up a few knocks themselves and their priority is going to be protecting themselves and their club, so there isn’t as many available as there has been in previous years but it is what it is.

“If we go into games with what we’ve got, then we’ll give it everything we’ve got with the players we’ve got available to us.”

More swap deals?

Will Dagger Photo: James Heaton/News Images

Applegarth says there is the possibility that the club could do more swap deals like we have seen with Dagger and Hall earlier this week.

He said: “We are a club that always spend within our means. We haven’t got owners that are willing to offset millions in personal loss and rightly so.

“We’re trying to get a sustainable club and we have been very sustainable and one of the things in that is that we’ve got budgets to work to.

“We aren’t at cap, we’ve got a budget that we all knew coming into the start of this year, so if that means that there’s no more many, then the only solution to getting players in is seeing what business is out there.

“The team is bigger than any individual so you always do whats right for the team and the club, that’s not me saying that I want to get rid of players because I don’t, but if offers were made to Michael (Carter, chief executive) then you’d be a fool not to listen to them.”

NEW FACE: Wakefield’s new recruit Will Dagger on “mad few days” as he discusses Hull KR exit

Mark Applegarth refusing to use injuries as an excuse

Trinity are currently bottom of the Super League table, having yet to register a win so far this season.

Injuries haven’t been kind to Trinity so far in 2023, with the club having had key players such as Jowitt, Reece Lyne, Lee Gaskell, Liam Hood, Kelepi Tanginoa and Lewis Murphy sidelined for most of the six rounds.

Applegarth doesn’t like using injuries as an excuse, but admits they are scouring the market to bring in more players to cover their injury list.

He said: “I’ve tried staying out of the press and blaming injuries because I don’t like that victim mentality, I think its weak.

“But the facts are we need to get some bodies in so we’ve been as pro-active as we can.

“When you look out there, who do you go for? It’s not easy. If you had a magic wand with £100,000, you can’t just say ‘we’ll go and get these players’ because they aren’t out there and the players that are out there are contracted to other clubs.

“Naturally, other clubs are a business themselves and they’ll do whats right for their business. If they don’t feel they can off step that loss, they won’t make that asset available will they? So there’s that side of it as well.

“I 100 per cent get the fans’ frustration, I share it at times, but I can assure them that we’re doing what feel is right for Wakefield Trinity in the short-term and long-term health of the club.”

Wakefield face a tough trip over the Pennines to take on world champions St Helens on Friday night.

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