Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Look out! Here come: Dewsbury

If you thought you were having a bad week, spare a thought for poor Warren Jowitt.

Previously battered by 36 to 6 by Halifax and 38 to 6 by Featherstone, the Northern Rail Cup's not been kind to the Rams. Winless and pointless until last week's horror-show, skin-of-their-teeth win at Oldham, they've now shipped over 100 points in three games with a minus 60 points difference.

And, not only do they look like a team struggling to gain momentum, last week they suffered a 2nd half collapse that would put even Keighley to shame. 

20 points to 4 up at the break  - and cruising at 30 points to 4 approaching the hour mark - they spectacularly imploded, shipping four tries and hanging on grimly for a two point win by 30 to 28.

Needless to say, coach Jowitt wasn't happy. Speaking in 'League Weekly' he said:  "To give away penalty after penalty and to drop the ball as much as we did in the second half is not acceptable…"

He wasn't happy in the Yorkshire Post either: “We fell in love with ourselves. After totally dominating the first half. We played some good football in the first 40, but what happened after that was not acceptable… with due respect to (Oldham) it was a case of what we didn’t do rather than what they did.”

Certainly one of the possible issues behind the Rams' inauspicious start could be the veritable tsunami of new signings. In preparation for the 2012 season Warren Jowitt has signed (deep breath…):

Craig Cook (hooker, played at Toulouse last season); Ben Jones (Prop, ex-Leeds Academy, played at York last year); Ryan Esders (Centre/Back Rower - also ex-York); Dwayne Barker (Utility forward - ex-Halifax, Leeds, Castleford, Hull KR & Harlequins); Scott Spaven - Half Back/Hooker (ex-Hull KR, at Doncaster last year); Danny Gaunt (hooker/half back from Stanley Rangers);  Derrell Olpherts (full-back - ex-Sharlston and Featherstone); Ed barber (half back - ex-Huddersfield, Castleford and Newcastle Wests in NSW) and George Flanagan (ex-Batley and Bradford Bulls hooker, who last year completed a 2 year ban after testing postive for cocaine).

Jowitt has also signed Bradford pair Steve Crossley (permanent deal) and Cain Southernwood (dual registration), plus Castleford's Billy Harris (12 month loan), John Davies & James Clare (both dual registration).

However, Dewsbury's marquee signing in the off season was ex-Saints/Cas forward Nick Fozzard - though of greater interest to Hornets fans is their acquisition of world-record try scorer Danny Samuel (without the 's').

It's clear that once this squad clicks it'll be more than competitive, but while they're all over the shop Hornets have a chance. In fact, if Hornets could nick this and beat South Wales convincingly, six points could give us a teeny-tiny, outside chance of qualification.

And that would be most acceptable.