Rotherham Titans debut duo to get chance in cup clash

Max Argyle impressed on his debut
Max Argyle impressed on his debut
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Rotherham Titans today start their preparations for their second match in the British and Irish Cup against south Wales club Aberavon at Clifton Lane on Saturday.

However, there was one serious casualty from the triumph in the derby against Yorkshire Carnegie who were beaten by 20-3 in Scarborough over the weekend.

Forward Ben Morris, who has just broken into the first team, broke a hand and is likely to be absent for some weeks, but it is hoped that hooker Tom Cruse who suffered a bang to the head in the first round tie will be fit to take an Aberavon side that were impressive during their victory by 18-14 against Ulster Ravens, also in the same group as Rotherham.

Coach Lee Blackett will in all probability pick the same squad which reacted positively in the Yorkshire derby following the recent Championship defeat by Worcester Warriors.

The Titans’ coach was delighted with the form shown by two of the debutants, winger Craig Dowsett, ex-Loughborough Students, and flanker Max Argyle, a former Sheffield University student who played at Derby, Sheffield Tigers and two clubs in Hull before making his debut.

Both will keep their places and start against Aberavon who are second from bottom in the Welsh Premiership with only one win in four league matches.

“I was not expecting to be picked to play Carnegie and thought I would be on the bench,” said Argyle who was Blackett’s man of the match.

“I’ve waited 18 months for my first appearance and I loved it. I really enjoy it here at Rotherham. I think the beauty of it is that everyone is good friends.

“The people I hang around with are the same people I train with every day. I can’t wait to make my home debut at Clifton Lane.

“I think the Rotherham supporters are the best in the league, aren’t they?

“When you look back at the game against Yorkshire Carnegie, I thought we were dominant in the pack and our backs carved open spaces,” added Argyle who helped to bring the hard edge to the side that Blackett was looking for.

“For me the most pleasing aspect was the attitude shown by the players. We were desperate to get a result after being embarrassed by the performance against Worcester,” said Blackett.

“We want to make progress in the British and Irish Cup and it’s important financially to the club.”