Tackling Coronavirus And A Flying Start To 2020 For The Under 18s

Category: Academy

Tackling Coronavirus And A Flying Start To 2020 For The Under 18s

Jason Netherton and John Bastian have been discussing how they are tackling COVID-19, and the Under 18s flying start to 2020 before being halted by the crisis.

Most recently Hull Kingston Rovers Academy picked up and impressive home victory over the well-established London Broncos at Hull College Craven Park, before traveling to Newcastle to come from behind and seal their first victory.

Head of Youth John Bastian, who began establishing the youth set-up back in June 2019, is delighted with the progress and effort shown by the youngsters so far: “I think we can be really proud of where we are at the moment, certainly the Under 18s,” said Bastian.

“We only had a skeleton number of players when we came in, Jason Netherton and myself brought a lot of kids in from the community game and they have progressed really well in the environment. They are far fitter and far stronger, more skilful and more adaptable to offensive and defensive systems.

“I think one of the key areas that certainly Jason and myself have worked on has them being competitive and committed to one another. Making sure that they are switched on and focused – that they do want to improve during each session, and I think that has certainly show in the recent performances.”

Former Rovers star of ten years, Jason Netherton is thrilled to see the Academy’s recent success as his crop of players have brought pride to the label, ‘home grown talent’.

He added: “The work ethic from the players and their honesty in the game has been vital, that’s what we speak about leading into everything we do. So far they have given some real hard working and honest performances with two wins from two, but the results are a bi-product of their performance.

“We are a very young squad, not just in age but in rugby league years as well. We’ve got a lot of players in from the community game that haven’t had that academy or scholarship background before.

“They have worked really hard over the last 4/5 months of the pre-season, and their skill is starting to show. I’m hoping that continuing forward it will instil a bit more confidence in those players.”

Tackling Coronavirus and keeping players fit has been a key focus since the country was poised into lockdown by the Prime Minister.

The club are staying vigilant and helping maintain player fitness from home, prepared for the season to continue once again.

“We’ve are very aware of the threats from coronavirus and obviously we have to make sure that we play our part in the process to beating this over a period of time,” said Bastian.

“Both sets of groups (Scholarship and Academy) are having down time and keeping fit from home with plans that we have set, with thanks to the strength and conditioning team at Rovers.

“The time is certainly reduced but we will make sure that we will still have plenty of quality. In this period where there is no contact training, the players are going to focus on skills and key cardio fitness, then we will get back into the wrestling and contact when we return.

“We’re looking at all angles to make sure that we make the environment as safe as we can for our players and staff, we are constantly in touch will our doctor, Gemma Phillips, who has been outstanding and given us a much better understanding of the virus and the threats that it has. Hopefully in this period of time Hull Kingston Rovers and the community will start coming through this and we’ll start seeing positive signs once again.”


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