Monday 30 December
Warrington Wolves marquee signing Gareth Widdop has officially arrived in the UK in time to begin training with his new club in the new year. Warrington Guardian’s Mike Parsons writes: “They were met at the airport by Wire head coach Steve Price and operations manager Kylie Leuluai.”
Hull Daily Mail’s James O’Brien is reporting that Mitch Garbutt is set to miss the opening round of the 2020 Super League season after speaking with head coach Tony Smith. He writes: “Tony Smith said last month that the prop was on schedule to return for the first game but adjusted that slightly when I spoke to him last week, saying round two against Hull FC was more likely.”
In his latest column in Telegraph & Argus, Eric Perez has asked that the media give Bradford Bulls a fair hearing in 2020 after growing calls for an investigation into the club. “For the past two months, every week, one or two schoolyard journalists and anonymous keyboard warriors have been reporting the allegedly growing clamour, from apparently numerous clubs, for an investigation into our club. In-so-doing this has spread destructive doubt and uncertainty as to the future prospects for the club,” he said.
According to Hull Daily Mail’s William Jackson, Hull FC academy talents Jude Ferreira and Jacob Hookem have been called up to train with the first team. “They’ve been training the last three Saturdays with us. It’s good for them to be in and around it and it won’t do them any harm,” head coach Lee Radford told Jackson on the duo’s inclusion against York as part of a pre-season friendly behind closed doors.
Owen Harrison feels a good pre-season has put him in a strong position to push on in 2020 having got up to Super League speed with nine performances for Hull KR this year. “In my first few games it was a case of having 10 to 15 minutes to go mad and prove yourself. Last year it was the match fitness and that I wasn’t fit enough. With this pre-season under my belt… I’ve had a great pre-season up to now,” he told Hull Daily Mail’s James O’Brien.