McDonald to fill in for loan ace

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SHEFFIELD Eagles’ coach Mark Aston will turn to the ‘safe hands’ of Dane McDonald to replace loan half-back Kyle Wood at Batley Bulldogs today.

Utility player McDonald will come in at stand-off where he played for much of the early part of the season.

Wood and fellow dual-registration signing Jamie Cording have been recalled by parent club Huddersfield Giants as cover over Easter.

“Dane will be at six, we’ll keep the back three the same and have a look at who’s earned the right to be on the bench,” said Aston.

That keeps the partnership of on-loan Jason Crookes and Vinney Finigan on the left after they were cleared to play by Bradford Bulls.

Prop Eddie Battye and centre Corey Hanson are in contention to replaved back row forward Cording. Winger Danny Mills will miss out again after losing his place through injury.

Today’s game at Mount Pleasant (kick-off 3pm) sees the clash of two of the form teams in the Championship.

The Eagles are going for a fifth straight win for the first time in five seasons in the Championship. Batley, who beat local rivals Dewsbury at the start of the Easter programme, have won five of their six league games.

Aston said: “We are a strong team and playing well, at Batley it will be about keeping our standards high.

“We dropped those standards a bit last weekend and the lads need to get to a higher level to win this game. People are talking about winning five on the bounce but we’re concentrating on this game.”

Doncaster Dons are aiming to become the first team to beat league leaders Swinton Lions in Championship One at 3pm today.