Local youngsters get their chance for Sheffield Eagles

Home grown youngsters Paddy Burns and Blake Broadbent look set to be back in contention as Sheffield Eagles chief Mark Aston plots potential changes to his side.

By Matt Young
Thursday, 02 May, 2019, 08:58

Aston has witnessed the highs and lows of Championship rugby league in recent weeks after presiding over a sensational Bank Holiday winning double-header, but his side were brought back down to earth after a disappointing defeat to Halifax last weekend.

With three games in quick succession, Aston has had to be careful not to overload his troops, with some expected to feel the effects of the busy Easter period.

With Paddy Burns and Broadbent taken out of the firing line recently, with Burns stood down with a head injury, Aston hinted the exuberance of youth could well give his side a shot in the arm ahead of Sunday’s showdown with Leigh.

“Paddy Burns will be back soon, he'll have a chance of getting back in so we’ll have a look at him,” Aston told The Star.

“There are others too who will have seen what happened and there might be some of the others sticking their hand up this week. Corey Makelim is another, and there are others to have a look at again.

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“We'll analyse the Halifax performance, we'll have a look at who was good, and who wasn’t and then we’ll sit down and pick a team that we feel will go out there and put in the performance required.  There are a lot of players disappointed by their performances last weekend which in a way is a positive because hopefully they'll work hard this week to put that right. It will be an important week on the training ground.”

Aston’s selection decision will also be influenced by what personnel he receives on dual-registration from London Broncos. Centre Ben Hellewell has been a big success for the Eagles, but illness forced him into a late withdrawal as Aston plugged the gap with the inclusion of Rory Dixon.

He added: “Ben was sick so he pulled out just before the game. Blake Broadbent played twice recently so I felt he needed a rest. When Ben dropped out I fetched Rory Dixon straight in.

“There's one or two missing, but the team against Halifax was very similar to the one on Good Friday that beat Toulouse. There's no excuses, we’ll be working hard to put it right.”