Sheffield Eagles aiming for strength in depth

Sheffield Eagles director Mark Aston believes his side is heading in the right direction as he looks to increase competition for places.

Wednesday, 10th April 2019, 8:43 am
Updated Wednesday, 10th April 2019, 8:49 am

Aston made only subtle changes for the campaign’s opening five rounds but injury to Jason Crookes and Blake Broadbent’s suspension hinted at a lack of depth.

A dual-registration deal with Super League London Broncos aided Eagles but without help for the Challenge Cup, it was clear that Aston needed to strengthen. He secured Warrington prop Pat Moran on a one-month loan and then the London trio Ben Hellwell, Sadiq Adebiyi and Dan Hindmarsh, against Toronto.  Aston would like to see the trio on a regular basis and it seems Hellewell in particular could be around for a few more weeks. 

“It will all depend whether London pick up injuries but I think they'll be around for a bit,” Aston said. “Ben has only played a couple of games since coming back from injury, so you'd think he'd need five or six behind him, but again that's dependent on their injuries.

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“Sadiq will be on the fringes, but whilst he isn't playing for them, he'll need game time. They know that. Daniel is a little bit further down the pecking order. He's played a few times for London Skolars, so playing at the top end of The Championship against some really good teams will be good for him.”

Aston was careful in adding the right characters to his squad, as he looked to avoid changing a dressing room culture he has worked hard to turn around following a couple of difficult seasons.

He did his homework in particular on Moran, with Aston checking in with current Warrington coach and former Eagle Andrew Henderson before making his decision.

He added: “We have good connections at Warrington with Hendo being there. He spoke really highly of him. That was important to hear because I don't want to bring anyone here that doesn't have the right attitude.”