Crocker arriving next season to bolster Hull

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The Independent Online

The new regime at Hull has made its first signing with the recruitment of the Australian Test forward, Michael Crocker.

Crocker has negotiated an early release from his contract with the Melbourne Storm so that he can take up a three-year deal at the KC Stadium from 2009.

His signing is a considerable coup for Hull, as Crocker was interesting other Super League clubs, including Leeds.

Hull’s bad luck with their current crop of imports has continued, however, with the news that Peter Cusack will be out for the next six weeks. The prop broke a bone in his hand against St Helens on Sunday.

Saints are worried about the career prospects of their second-rower, Mike Bennett, who dislocated his shoulder in the same match.

Bennett has been told that he will need a third operation on the shoulder and will be out for the rest of the season.

Warrington are more optimistic about their young wingman, Kevin Penny, who was stretchered off during the defeat by Castleford on Monday. The club believe that Penny has suffered only soft tissue damage and could be back in a couple of weeks.

Steve Folkes, whose contract at Canterbury is not being renewed at the end of this season, has admitted an interest in the coaching job at Warrington, vacated by Paul Cullen’s resignation on Monday night.

The caretaker-coach, James Lowes, is likely to be given several matches to stake his claim, however, before any move to bring in an outsider. Ellery Hanley, now with Doncaster, and North Queensland’s Ian Millward have also been linked with the job.

The Bradford full-back, Michael Platt, is free to face Hull in the Challenge Cup quarter-final on Sunday. He was found guilty of pushing an opponent into an advertising hoarding and fined, but avoided a suspension.