EXPERIENCED players are set to return for Sheffield Eagles this weekend.
Aston says injury clouds are starting to clear as the squad prepares for the must-win game against Hunslet Hawks.
Second row forward Alex Szostak – who Aston described as his “million dollar man” when he signed a new contract last season – is lined up to return.
Szostak has missed the last two games with a virus. He’s back in training and should be fit for Sunday’s clash at Don Valley. “Alex has been hit hard by a virus but should be ok for Sunday,” said Aston.
Szostak should be joined by half-backs Kyle Wood who missed the Leigh Centurions trip with a dead leg and Simon Brown who has been sidelined for the last two games with a groin strain. If they face Hunslet it will be the first time Brown and Wood have formed a partnership for the Eagles.
A bounce-back performance is needed after the Eagles 12-try mauling at Leigh. A win could earn a place in the quarter-finals if other results go the Eagles way.
Aston said: “Kyle and Simon should be back for Sunday. When we have Brown and Wood there’s a kicking game and a threat. Alex is the man that people rarely notice but he’ll stand up and be counted.”
Aston was forced to pick from 18-fit players at Leigh. They included three young players – centre Corey Hanson, half-back Pat Smith and fullback Jamie Cottle – with only five senior games between them. Cottle, 20, scored his first try at senior level there – with Tim Bergin’s goal the only Eagles’ points.