Thackray rejoins Hull to provide 'explosive impact'

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The Independent Online

Jamie Thackray has gone straight into this weekend's Hull squad, after being re-signed by the club with which he became a Great Britain international. The prop forward has rejoined Hull until the end of the season following his release by Leeds. It is the latest twist in a chequered career.

Thackray cut his teeth with Hunslet and made only a moderate impact with Halifax and Castleford. But in his first stint at Hull, he won a Challenge Cup and three Test caps in 2005 before falling out of favour.

He was a regular in Leeds' Super League-winning side last season, but lost his place before the Grand Final. He has not appeared for the Rhinos this year and has spent time on loan to Doncaster.

Now an injury crisis at Hull has given him his second chance at his former club. For tomorrow's game at the Catalan Dragons, they are still without the injured Ewan Dowes and Gareth Carvell, as well as Peter Cusack, who has stayed in Hull for the birth of his child.

"With our current injury problems, we felt this was an opportunity not to be missed," said Hull's chief executive, James Rule. "Jamie will strengthen our squad and, as we all know from his time with the club, he can provide a real explosive impact into a game."

Another club with severe front row problems, St Helens, have taken a step in the right direction with the inclusion of Jason Cayless for the first time this year. The New Zealand front-rower has not played since October and had knee surgery over the winter, but has been included to face Leeds tonight.

Bryn Hargreaves is also back after a thumb injury against a Rhinos side without Lee Smith and Carl Ablett. Kylie Leuluai is back for Leeds after concussion, Ryan Hall is called up and another youngster, the full-back, Ben Jones-Bishop, makes the squad for the first time.

In tonight's other game, Richard Mathers is back after a three-match suspension for Wigan against Wakefield, who have added Danny Brough and Sam Obst to their injured list.

John Kear is set to give Jay Pitts a debut and continue with Jason Golden as an emergency hooker.