The England hopeful, 20, has not played since suffering a double leg fracture in September but is now fit to resume and is included in Richard Agar’s 21-man squad for the trip to face Catalans Dragons in Perpignan.
With England duo Ash Handley and Mikolaj Oledzki both isolating due to close contacts with family members and Rhyse Martin and Bodene Thompson serving suspensions, the potential return of Newman is a real fillip for the West Yorkshire club.
He will also hope to eventualy build up his fitness in a bid to perhaps make a late bid for Shaun Wane’s England squad with the World Cup – set to be confirmed by organisers this morning as going ahead as planned – due to kick-off on October 23. Young Rhinos half-back Callum McLelland who could also make his first appearance of 2021 with Rob Lui ruled out injured for the game against the Super League leaders.
Off the field, Rhinos have posted a loss of £1.24m for 2020 – on the back of Covid causing such disruption to their business – but chief executive Gary Hetherington is “sure” they will eventually recover.
Accounts published yesterday show turnover reduced from £11.47m to £8.75m with a loss before tax of £1.24m compared to £1.12m in 2019.
Given Leeds, in conjunction with Yorkshire CCC, embarked on a £45m redevelopment plan of Emerald Headingley Stadium, the global pandemic was always going to have a significant impact on their financial performance.
Traditionally one of the best-run Super League clubs of the summer era, Hetherington said: “It was a real team effort by our fans, sponsors, key partners, players and staff who all made significant sacrifices and it will take a long time for us to fully recover.
“However, together I am sure we will recover and with the unwavering support of our supporters are well placed to do so” he added.
The club says, in total, furlough grants of almost £900,000 were received in the year and all staff earning above the living wage took salary cuts to the end of the financial year between 15 and 35 per cent to assist the club with ‘unprecedented cash flow pressures.’
Ex-Hull KR second-row Con Mika has joined Keighley Cougars for the remainder of the season.
The Samoa international, who has spent the last six years in France with the likes of Toulouse Olympique, could debut at Coventry Bears tomorrow.