Sheens: We’re not six from six in cup competition
Head coach Tim Sheens says previous form counts for nothing and insists his team go into Sunday’s Ladbrokes Challenge Cup tie against Sheffield on a level footing with the Eagles.
Rovers are favourites to book their place in the fifth round when they host their Kingstone Press Championship rivals at KCOM Craven Park tomorrow (3pm), but Sheens warns his side’s league results will have no bearing on tomorrow’s game.
The Robins have won all six of their Championship matches so far this season, but the Rovers boss has warned his team their hard work must start again in a new competition this weekend.
He said: “The competition has got a great reputation and everybody in Australia knows about the Challenge Cup.
“There’s an added pressure to the competition as there’s no second chances for the team. It’s an elimination competition and we have to be on our game on the day. We’re not six from six in this competition, we’re none from none.
“We don’t have that buffer that we’ve got in the league whereby if you’ve won your first six games you can always recover from a defeat and still have a chance of success at the end of the year. That’s not the case, if we want to be a success we have to win our first game.
“The supporters are paying fresh money to come on Sunday, too, they’re putting their hands in their pockets again, and they deserve a performance from this football team as well. We’ve said to the boys that people are getting behind them this year and we don’t want to let anybody down at this point.”
The two teams last met a fortnight ago when Rovers secured a 50-10 win at KCOM Craven Park, but Sheens insists there can be no room for complacency against an improved Eagles side tomorrow afternoon.
Sheffield have been boosted by the return of forwards Mark Mexico and Jordan Cox last week, and have also brought two players on loan in Reece Dean from Toronto and Huddersfield’s Liam Johnson.
Sheens added: “The biggest thing we need to get right is our mental preparation. Will we just be turning up thinking that because we beat them here two weeks ago then we can automatically beat them on Sunday?
“I hope not. We’ve talked and talked about it this week and we’ve trained hard as well. The big thing now is whether the players truly believe deep in their minds that they need to turn up and put in a big effort to win the game.
“We’ve talked about the Oldham game last year as well. Not all of the players or the coaching staff were here then, but it serves a reminder of what can happen if you don’t turn up properly and the opposition sense that.
“Sport is all about upsets. We all live for it and if Sheffield come and play tough and we don’t then we’re in trouble, we understand that.”
Rovers fans are reminded that tickets for tomorrow's match are just £10 adults and £5 concessions when purchased in advance from the Rovers Retail store or online at www.hullkr.co.uk/tickets
2017 Members aged under 16 are also entitled to a free ticket for the match but this must be claimed in store today before 5pm by showing your membership card.