Turnbull returns for third spell with Eagles

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BACK row forward Nick Turnbull has rejoined Sheffield Eagles for his third spell and coach Mark Aston is tempted to hand him an instant call-up.

Turnbull opens up selection options for Aston ahead of the must-win game against Hunslet Hawks.

“Nick has been training with us and is keen to get back involved and is rejoining us,” said Aston. “We haven’t made a call on him playing on Sunday but there’s always a chance - we need to have a look at everybody who is part of the squad.”

It would be a test for Turnbull, who has switched from centre to the pack and has been playing for amateurs Hoyland Vikings, but Aston is confident he will cope.

“Nick’s a big unit and he was always going to end up a back rower or even in the front row – he’s mobile and he’s tough and has a bit of grunt about him. I’m delighted he’s come back.”

Turnbull, 28, from Barnsley, played 87 games for the Eagles between 2002 and 2009. He took a break from the game after the 2005 season returning in 2007 but for the next three seasons played only a handful of games.

Aston is looking for a massive improvement from his team after the 86-6 mauling at Leigh Centurions.

A win over Hunslet at Don Valley Stadium on Sunday (kick-off 3pm) would almost certainly book a place in the knockout quarter-finals of the Northern Rail Cup.

Aston said: “We need to win but we need to play well, the boys need to stand up and put the disappointment of last Sunday behind them. It’s about getting a performance and if we do that we’ll get the result.”

Half-backs Kyle Wood and Simon Brown plus second rower Alex Szostak should be back from injury to give the 17 a more balanced look.

Hunslet, like Eagles, go into the game on five points from three games in Pool 2 of the Rail Cup. Both teams have one win but the Hawks have put in two mean defensive performances to gain losing bonus points.