Pressure helps focus the minds at Hull KR – Sheens

Tim Sheens.
Tim Sheens.
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HULL KR head coach Tim Sheens admits the pressure has been “cranked up” ahead of Saturday’s historic game at Toronto Wolfpack.

Rovers become the first Super League side to play at the promotion-chasing Canadian club in what has quickly become a crucial Qualifiers contest.

Sheens saw his side disappointingly lose their opening game – a home match against top-flight rivals Salford Red Devils on Friday – while Championship leaders Toronto are well-fancied.

“I don’t think it matters to us about being the first Super League team to go over there or anything like that,” said the Australian, who is desperate to ensure Rovers are not soon embroiled in a relegation battle.

“Maybe afterwards we’ll reflect on being a part of that but the focus for us at the moment is just to go there and get the two points.

“Losing to Salford on Friday has cranked the pressure up a little bit. It wasn’t the end of the world but it adds to the pressure with everybody eager to get off the mark.

“We don’t want to be two defeats from our opening two matches.

“In saying that, there’s pressure to perform every week and I like a bit of pressure to focus the mind.

“We just need to make sure that the senior players and the coaching staff – people with experience – don’t let that build up too much because we need to play with clear minds.”

With that in mind, he is pleased to see the return of New Zealander prop Mose Masoe and veteran hooker Tommy Lee.

Huddersfield Giants have Kruise Leeming, Daniel Smith and Jake Wardle in contention for tomorrow’s game against Hull FC who, in turn, have Dean Hadley and Mark Minichiello back in their ranks.