Wakefield Wildcats head coach Richard Agar has named his first 19-man squad of 2013 with Kyle Wood and Tim Smith in the mix to face Bradford Bulls on Sunday, kick-off 3pm.
Wakefield travel to Bradford after a successful pre-season which included victories over Featherstone and Doncaster while spending time at a warm weather training camp in Portugal. Skipper Danny Kirmond will once again lead out the team after taking over the reins midway through 2012 and helping the side to seven straight victories.
Australian prop Justin Poore is set to make his Super League debut for the Wildcats at the Provident Stadium along with fellow new boy Reece Lyne. Ali Lauitiiti returns to the squad after sitting out the final friendly against Doncaster last Sunday while Andy Raleigh and Lee Smith are notable absentees.
Loanee Brad Singleton and academy graduates Matty Wildie and Chris Annakin are also in the squad but Agar has not yet decided his final 17. The head coach says he will make a final decision after training on Saturday morning to see if Smith has proved his fitness.
“We’re going to get him on the field on Saturday morning but we’re not going to rush him back,” said Agar.
“He’s making terrific progress but unless he’s 100 per cent eight we’re not going to play him because he’s probably too important for us, I want him fully fit and firing. There are 27 rounds to play yet so I’m not going to take any risks in round 1.
“We’ve worked on adapting our game a little bit on the fact Timmy might not be there. He’s a player that calls a lot of plays so we may well structure little parts of our game differently.”
The squad in full:
1. Richard MATHERS
2. Peter FOX
3. Dean COLLIS
5. Ben COCKAYNE
6. Paul SYKES
7. Tim SMITH
8. Justin POORE
9. Paul AITON
11. Ali LAUITIITI
12. Danny KIRMOND
13. Danny WASHBROOK
14. Kyle WOOD
15. Kyle AMOR
16. Oliver WILKES
17. Frankie MARIANO
20. Reece LYNE
21. Matty WILDIE
23. Brad SINGLETON
27. Chris ANNAKIN
Wildcats supporters may have already noticed the #WTW hashtag the official Wildcats Twitter account @WTWildcatsRL has been using so far in 2013. This is the hashtag that will be used throughout the new campaign as the club encourage all Wildcats related Tweets to carry the #WTW slogan in.
Make sure you travel to Bradford and support Agar and his team for the first Super League game of the 2013 campaign. Tickets are available on the gate at Bradford for £20 adults, £15 for students or over 60’s while juniors will be charged just £10.
This is Wakefield. Together We Are Stronger.