Sheens on three new signings already confirmed for 2019

Category: On The Pitch

Sheens on three new signings already confirmed for 2019

Hull Kingston Rovers head coach Tim Sheens has spoken to about his first three new signings to strengthen the first team squad for the 2019 season.

The Robins secured their place in the Betfred Super League for next year with a 30-0 victory over Widnes at KCOM Craven Park on Sunday, and Sheens revealed to the media after the game that top flight trio Jimmy Keinhorst, Weller Hauraki and Ryan Lennon were all set to join the club.

Terms had been agreed with all three players for a number of months prior to their confirmation at the end of the season, with the trio being the first of several new faces expected to arrive in the off season. Keinhorst and Lannon have both signed three-year contracts with the club, whilst Hauraki will link up on a two-year deal.

Speaking about his new recruits, Sheens said: “We’ve got three good guys coming into the club who are going to add to the personalities we have here.

“Between them they give us some size and some depth. Jimmy has the versatility to play centre, both left and right, and in the second row. He’s a very experienced player with well over 100 first team appearances along with international experience for Germany and he’s a quality guy as well.

“He’s coming from a very good club in the Rhinos but I think he’ll blossom here with more opportunities to play first team on a regular basis. He’s just across the way in Leeds and he’ll link up with our travelling contingent from that area, with many of them being players who he already knows.”

Lannon is a 22-year-old graduate of Salford’s academy who has pushed through to become a regular at first team level for the Red Devils and worked with Sheens during his time as the club’s Director of Rugby.

The Rovers boss added: “Ryan was the captain of the Salford academy side and I had a lot of time for him whilst I was there. I really enjoyed working with him and when he was offered to us I jumped at it.

“He can play in the back row or through the middle as a loose forward, but I like him as that dynamic ‘third middle’. He’s of the build of a Robbie Mulhern, he’s going to be a big lad but he’s more athletic than some of the thickset props.

“He’s got a good offload and a good engine. He works hard and we’ve got ourselves a good lad there. He brings the age of the team down a bit as well and he’ll really challenge for those spots in our side. He’s kept some good players out of the team at Salford and he’s been one of their best ball carriers this season.

“We’ve spoken about playing a bit more second phase next year with some of the options we’ve got for full back and with Danny McGuire in the side, so Ryan’s offloads will suit how we intend to play.”

Hauraki is another player well known to Sheens after his time as Salford’s club captain, although the experienced New Zealand-born back rower spent the latter part of the season on loan at Widnes.

Having started his career in the NRL with Parramatta Eels, Hauraki has had spells with several Super League clubs including Crusaders, Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers.

“Weller is another who can play on the edge or through the middle, although he’s more of a 13 than an 8 or a 10,” Sheens added.

“He’s got good hands and skill levels, and he’s been in England for half his career so he’s well established over here and knows what to expect.

“Weller is a strong character and a good trainer, which I like. He was the club captain over at Salford which shows what he’s like off the field, but on the pitch he’s very talented with ball in hand and in defence. He adds a lot of experience and he’ll be good value for us.”

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