Morgan commits future to Hull KR
Saturday 03 June 2006
Justin Morgan has shown his commitment to the cause at Hull Kingston Rovers as they attempt to reach the semi-finals of the Powergen Challenge Cup.
Rovers, top of National League One, face Super League Warrington tomorrow knowing that their coach will be with them until the end of the 2008 season after agreeing a one-year extension to his contract.
Morgan's success at Craven Park, coming after he guided Toulouse to the Cup semi-finals last season, has been noted by other clubs, but he has emphasised that he wants to stay on Humberside to try to finish the job he has started.
"I'm absolutely delighted to extend my stay with Rovers as I believe the club is on the up and up," he said.
Rovers chairman Neil Hudgell welcomed his decision. "He is one of the brightest and most talented coaches in rugby league and is pivotal to the continued progress and success of Hull KR," Hudgell said.
Morgan will have the current NL1 player of the month, Tommy Gallagher, at loose forward, but another of last season's Toulouse side, the goalkicking centre, Damien Couturier, is likely to miss out with an ankle injury.
There is experience at a high level available in the shape of Leroy Rivett, the only player to score four tries in a Wembley final in his days with Leeds, and Jon Steel, who has been capped on the wing playing rugby union for Scotland.
Warrington will not fall into the trap of taking the lower division side lightly and could have their versatile back, Chris Bridge, back after an ankle injury.
The first of the weekend's quarter-finals is at St Helens today, where the visit of the Catalans Dragons promises an intriguing battle at scrum-half. Stacey Jones, in the second game of his comeback from a broken arm, plays his first Challenge Cup tie and will be up against a specialist in the competition in Sean Long.
"He's a great little player," said Saints' Kiwi prop, Jason Cayless, of Jones. "You saw what he did for the New Zealand team in the Tri-Nations and he's definitely a big danger to us."
Saints have James Graham back in a squad which has lost once this season and is close to full strength.
In tomorrow's other ties, Henry Paul is clear to play for Harlequins at Leeds and Keith Mason for Huddersfield against Salford. Both players were signed before the second Challenge Cup deadline after being Cup-tied for the last round.
Three players signed from Wigan this week - Dennis Moran, Jordan James and Oliver Wilkes - are in Widnes' squad to make their debuts at York tomorrow.
Castleford have signed the 22-year-old winger, Adam Fletcher, from the Brisbane club, Redcliffe, for the rest of this season. Fletcher's ancestry qualifies him to play for Greece and he will not count on the overseas quota for the Tigers.
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