Sheffield Eagles boss fires warning to Betfred Championship rivals after impressive start

Sheffield Eagles head coach Mark Aston has fired a warning to their Betfred Championship rivals, declaring ‘there’s more to come’ after another impressive win.

By Steve Jones
Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 8:20 am

The unfancied Eagles have set the early pace with two wins from their first two league matches, the latest a 20-14 victory over big-spending York City Knights on Sunday evening.

That result reversed a 6-30 defeat they suffered just four weeks ago against the same opposition in the Challenge Cup first round, which also ended their hopes of retaining the 1895 Cup.

"We are still not battle-hardened and that's the most pleasing thing,” said Aston, whose team have enjoyed a two-week gap between their three fixtures this season.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Mark Aston, Sheffield Eagles head coach.

“We're turning up and showing an attitude that's outstanding. They are really digging in for each other, when you have got a squad of players like that they are hard to break down.”

“I can't fault them when they keep turning up like that. There's more to come.”

A first-half brace from Anthony Thackeray and a Tyler Dickinson try put Sheffield Eagles in control at half time on Sunday before more steadfast defending in the second period restricted York’s fightback.

“It was great,” Aston added. “Our attitude was spot on, that's been evident in all the games so far this season.

“We got a bit flustered and a bit frantic in the second half but the first half we were outstanding. Throughout the 80 minutes our attitude defensively was on point.”

The result can give the soaring Eagles “massive” belief, said their boss.

He continued: “If you break down the first game they scored five tries, individual players put their hands up for four of them. It wasn't that they were breaking the systems down, it was just individual errors.

“A lot of confidence came out of that game because we knew we were rusty. What we took from that is confidence, we knew they couldn't break us down.

"We have got that inner belief and work ethic that gives us a chance in every single game.”

Championship new boys Newcastle Thunder are up next for Sheffield Eagles on Sunday.

“What you want to do is keep the momentum going,” said Aston.

"It will be another challenge for us week in, week out and managing that. We are ready.”