Wigan v Hull KR: Kelly glad to be back but ‘gutted’ by defeat

Hull KR's Ken Sio goes over to score.
Hull KR's Ken Sio goes over to score.
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HULL KR could give debuts to as many as three youngsters from the City of Hull Academy when they head to Wigan Warriors tonight.

Head coach James Webster is forced into making a raft of changes following Good Friday’s painful 22-20 loss against Hull FC.

Loose-forward Chris Clarkson, prop James Green, winger Josh Mantellato and scrum-half Albert Kelly have all succumbed to injuries.

It means untried teenagers winger Will Oakes, Joe Wardill and loose-forward Joe Cator come in along with prop Kieran Moran, who has just one senior game to his name.

Winger Kieran Dixon is ready to replace Mantellato and Matty Marsh will take over from Kelly, the Australian half-back who returned against Hull after a hamstring strain but who will not be risked this evening after picking up another slight knock.

He admitted it hurt losing to FC having been 20-0 ahead with almost an hour on the clock before spectacularly collapsing.

Kelly, 25, said: “It was good to be back despite the result.

“I got a pretty good 80 minutes out there.

“Hull FC played very fast – so did we at times – but we just lacked a bit in that second half controlling the ball; it seemed like they were always on the attack.

“It was gutting to lose like that. We had a lead and got a little bit comfortable and you can’t get like that.

“FC came back and they got a sniff. We shouldn’t have given them that.

“Every game is difficult but especially against Wigan now.

“They will field a tough team but we’ll do the same and look to go out there and put in a good performance.”

Wigan won their own Good Friday derby by winning 24-12 at St Helens and, while Rovers have won just once this term, tonight’s opponents have suffered only one defeat.

They lost prop Ben Flower to a slight hamstring injury in that Saints game so young hooker Luke Waterworth comes in to their 19-man squad.

He will debut if selected and Wigan head coach Shaun Wane said: “It’ll be two busted teams on Monday; it’ll be down to who wants it more.”