IT IS Halifax who may crucially need to win Sunday’s final regular Championship game against Hull KR to secure their Qualifiers berth – but their opponents made the eye-catching transfer deadline news late on Friday.
The Championship Leaders’ Shield winners moved shortly before the cut-off point to bring in talented young centre Jack Logan from city rivals Hull FC.
Logan, 21, has suffered plenty of injury problems in the last 18 months but is now back to full fitness and looking to recapture the form that saw him score nine tries in 21 first-team appearances for the Super League club.
A former England Academy international, he can also play wing and will be a useful addition for KR’s Qualifiers campaign as they seek to earn promotion.
Having already captured former St Helens prop Mose Masoe from St George-Illawarra – subject to visa clearance – they are undoubtedly well set to make their push.
Head coach Tim Sheens said: “Jack is able to play in a few positions in the outside backs and has previous experience in Super League.
“He’s had a couple of setbacks but he’s back fit and available now and comes into the squad to provide extra cover. We weren’t expecting to do any more business on the final day but we’ve managed to sort out a deal with Jack and Hull FC and we’re looking forward to having him on board.”
Fourth-placed Halifax, meanwhile, will be interested onlookers from afar when Toulouse and Featherstone Rovers meet in France on Saturday night.
If Toulouse – who inflicted a second defeat of the season on KR by winning 31-30 at Craven Park last Sunday – fail to win, Halifax will be immediately secure of a Qualifiers spot.
However, the French side will replace them in fourth with a victory and that will mean the West Yorkshire club will need something from Sunday afternoon’s contest at The Shay.
That will not deter Halifax coach Richard Marshall, though, given his side followed up an impressive win in Toulouse by prospering 28-8 at third-placed Featherstone on Sunday.
“We’ve improved over the last three weeks and I expect us to improve this week too,” he said, their run into contention starting with victory over Bradford Bulls.
“It’s certainly an exciting end to the season and the fixtures have fallen favourable.
“There’s not much between any of the teams going into the last game and I think that’s very good for the competition. It’d be a great achievement and fully deserved if we’re fortunate enough to get in the Qualifiers but we can only concentrate on ourselves this week and if we slip up, Toulouse can overtake us.”
On Hull KR, whose only two league defeats this term have been against Toulouse, Marshall added: “I should imagine they’ll want to bounce back.
“They’re a well-drilled, well-coached, competitive team and they certainly won’t hold back this week.
“We expect a tough game and we need a tough game; the harder games are the better we seem to play.”