Championship clubs heading into new season 'under-cooked', believes Dewsbury Rams chief Lee Greenwood
Dewsbury Rams head coach Lee Greenwood believes every side is going into the new campaign “under-cooked”.
The Rams return to competitive action for the first time in over a year when they take on Whitehaven on Saturday in the first round of the Challenge Cup.
Covid-19 has caused numerous disruptions for Championship clubs, who had their 2020 seasons curtailed.
Clubs have had to train under restrictions during pre-season and were limited to just two friendly games before kicking off the competitive campaign this weekend.
The Rams have warmed up for the new season with games against Heavy Woollen rivals Batley Bulldogs and Wakefield Trinity.
Greenwood reckons that every side would prefer to be more prepared for a return to action and feels the side who deals best with the circumstances will put themselves in a strong position.
“Everyone would prefer to be much more prepared, with the amount of time you have had off and the limited training you have had to do,” said Greenwood.
“There is no way that anybody can be properly prepared, everyone is going to be under-cooked.
“If you ask any coach, they all would have wanted more friendlies and been able to do more in training.
“It is just going to be about who has made the best out of the situation that everyone has been in.”
Greenwood is expecting to face a strong Whitehaven side in Saturday’s encounter.
The Cumbrian side have not had the most ideal preparation for the 2021 campaign, with one of their friendly games cancelled and the second one brought to an early finish due to a serious injury.
The Rams defeated Whitehaven in the competition last year, winning 22-16 in the fourth round.
However, Greenwood is expecting to face a much stronger Whitehaven team on Saturday evening.
“They have brought a number of players in,” he added.
“Looking at how they started last year, they probably realised they needed to strengthen their squad to have a good dig at staying in the Championship this year.
“It will be the first game for their new-look team. Gregg McNally is a great player, that is a good signing for them to get him back.
“They have brought a few overseas guys in to complement what they already had.
“I expect them to be stronger. I expect a very tough game.”