Watson vows to play on

Ian Watson has vowed to carry on playing for Swinton as long as he is worth his place in the team.

The Lions’ assistant player-coach quit international rugby after the autumn internationals when he became the most capped player in Wales history.

But the former Salford, Widnes, Rochdale, Oldham and Leigh scrum-half wants to continue turning out for Swinton.

Last season he was voted player-of-the-year by his team-mates, an accolade fully endorsed by coach Steve McCormack, as they lifted the Championship 1 title.

Now Watson wants to test himself in the Championship once again.

“I just want to keep playing and take every year as it comes,” he said.

“If I’m performing and deserve my place in the team I’ll carry on.

“Hopefully it will be for another year after this.”

Watson has recovered from an ankle sprain and is fit to face Hunslet at Leigh Sports Village on Sunday (2pm) in Swinton’s first Northern Rail Cup game of the season.

He expects a tough test against the Yorkshire side who were promoted the year before Swinton, but reckons the Lions will be ready.

“Our preparation has been good and we are ready to go,” he said.

“We were in good shape last year and the levels have picked up and hopefully that will stand us in good stead for this season.

“I’m excited to see how the new players link in with the lads already here and how the older players step up to this new level.

“The spectators will see a difference in the pace levels with the new guys who have come in.

Tom Armstrong and Adam Higson are really quick players and good defenders as well.

“Hunslet always a dogged team. Barry Eaton has just taken over as coach and I know him from the Wales squad.

“He has got some good ideas, is very in tune on defence and they should be a well-drilled outfit.”

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