Sheffield Eagles: Aston hopeful to have several bodies back for Halifax test

Michael Knowles could return for the Eagles this weekend
Michael Knowles could return for the Eagles this weekend

Sheffield Eagles are hopeful of welcoming back some key names as they prepare for a crucial game with Halifax this weekend.

Mark Aston was deprived of the services of some of his major players for last Sunday’s Challenge Cup defeat to Hull FC.

Aston’s side return to the bread and butter of the Championship on Sunday to face fourth placed Halifax, who will be looking to halve the four point deficit to the third placed Eagles.

With experienced trio Michael Knowles, James Davey and Pat Walker all missing the clash with Hull, Aston will be hoping for good news ahead of what is set to be another stern test of his Eagles side.

“We are hopeful on James Davey, we think he’ll be close to fitness but we felt it was the right call not to put play him last weekend,” Aston told The Star. “Michael Knowles doesn’t like missing games so if he was fit he would have played last weekend against Hull, no doubt about it.

“He battled through against Leigh for us but he struggled for the full week before the Hull game, but he will have benefitted from the rest because there is a massive game coming up against Halifax.”

Knowles and Davey seem the most likely to be in line for a return, while prop Tony Tonks serves the second of his two match suspension. There will also be a doubt over Jamie Langley who hobbled away from the game with Hull with a groin problem.

With the possibility of having some of his recent injury victims available to him again, Aston will have a tough call selecting a side with several players impressing on their return to the team in the defeat against Hull.

“I thought Ben Musolino was great last week,” Aston enthused.

“He managed to get through a very long stint against Hull which was impressive considering he hasn’t really played for six weeks.”

“Young Jack Blagbrough did really well as did Dom Brambani coming back into the side, and we also brought Rob Worrincy back and he was fantastic.

“There were so many positives to come out of last week and that was pleasing because there are always times when you need to keep things fresh and make changes.”