Endacott turns up heat as Widnes run out of chances

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Frank Endacott has warned his Widnes side that they face a second humiliation of the season at the hands of Leeds unless they lift their game today.

Frank Endacott has warned his Widnes side that they face a second humiliation of the season at the hands of Leeds unless they lift their game today.

The Vikings were thrashed 66-8 at Headingley in February, but last Sunday's 22-6 defeat by Salford was, in many ways, a worse performance.

"If we play against Leeds like we did against Salford, it will be a massacre," predicted the Widnes coach, who has added Andrew Emelio to those dropped for this game.

Endacott has put his men through it in some tough training sessions this week. "There's been more blood shed in those than there was against Salford," he said. "Now we have to play with some fire in the belly."

Widnes, next to bottom of Super League and in danger of being cast adrift, are still without Owen Craigie, who has mumps, while Leeds have Gareth Ellis and Chris McKenna back after injury, but are without Danny McGuire with a broken hand and rest Barrie McDermott.

Huddersfield have terminated the contract of their hooker or half-back, Sean Penkywicz, after he was suspended for two years by the Rugby League for taking the banned steroid, stanazolol. He is replaced in their first-team squad by Ryan Clayton, the former Halifax and Castleford centre, who has signed for the rest of this season.

"He has the potential to be a top-class Super League player," said the Giants coach, Jon Sharp, who has immediately added him to the squad to face St Helens tomorrow in a quick re-match after a controversial Challenge Cup meeting.

Saints' narrow victory that day saw Sharp complain bitterly about a rough deal from the referee, but he says that will not enter into his thinking this time.

"I'm not going to get drawn into revenge missions or grudge game type talk," he said.

Jamie Lyon will be back in Saints side after returning from a dash to Australia to be at the birth of his son. Sean Long and Ian Hardman are also return.

The highly rated prop forward, Paul King, will play his first game of the season for Hull at Warrington, after a six-month absence following knee surgery.

Tyrone Smith is back in London's party for the trip to Wakefield, as they try to end a four-match losing run.

Two tries, on his debut, from the New Zealand full-back, Jerome Ropati, were in vain as their young side went down 32-16 to Australia in Brisbane.

Matt Utai scored the brave Kiwis' other try, but they were never ahead against the world champions, whose tries came from Matt Sing, Shaun Berrigan, Tonie Carroll, Darren Lockyer, Willie Tonga and Anthony Minichiello.

Ian Hindmarsh, whose elder brother, Nathan, played for Australia in the Brisbane Test yesterday, has become the latest antipodean to commit himself to the Super League newcomers, Perpignan, for next season. Hindmarsh, who is currently playing for the Canberra Raiders, has a British passport and says he wants to play Tests for Great Britain.

Comments