Rugby League: Monday night rugby as season finally gets under way for Hornets

Date published: 18 February 2018

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Rochdale Hornets will finally kick-off their 2018 season on Monday evening, as they welcome Dewsbury Rams to the Crown Oil Arena.

Their season opener against Batley Bulldogs and their trip to Swinton Lions were both postponed due to waterlogged pitches.

The game will be taking place on Monday night due to Rochdale AFC’s FA Cup tie with Tottenham Hotspur being played on Sunday.

Hornets coach Alan Kilshaw will be hoping it is a good omen for his men, as the last time they opened their season against the Rams they did so in emphatic style.

In round one last year, Hornets marked their return to the Championship with a 46-0 triumph over Dewsbury as they spent the first two weeks at the top of the league.

On that day Ben Moores crossed for a brace of tries, while current Hornets Danny Yates, Joe Taira, Rob Massam and Ryan Maneely also scored.

The two fixtures that followed against the Rams saw Hornets fall to heavy defeats.

While Hornets have been frustrated by postponements, their opponents have featured twice already this season.

They opened their account with a 20-18 victory over Sheffield Eagles, as they survived a second-half fightback to claim a narrow win.

In their most recent clash, they were edged by London Broncos 12-0 in terrible conditions at the Tetley Stadium.

This will be their first away fixture, and there will be a familiar face in the Hornets line-up as Luke Adamson is set to face his former club.

Although he did not end 2017 with Dewsbury, he did start the season at the club before moving to Oldham RLFC.

His brother, Toby, will miss out on facing his former club as he broke a bone in his foot during pre-season training.

There will be late fitness tests for Richard Lepori and Dave Allen, who also picked up injuries during friendlies with Oldham and Warrington Wolves.

Due to the club missing out on a pre-season fixture with North Wales Crusaders and their season opener with Batley, fans are aiming to raise £5,000 to offset the loss of income.

Under 16s free on Monday night, with a full paying adult.

Alan Kilshaw previews Hornets season opener with Dewsbury Rams

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