Choices remain limited for Wharfedale selectors

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Wharfedale's versatile Phil Woodhead moves from scrum half to the wing Wharfedale's versatile Phil Woodhead moves from scrum half to the wing

Wharfedale coach Jon Feeley remains upbeat, despite his side’s continuing selection problems.

Injuries and holidays have continued to limit his options ahead of Saturday’s home game with SSE National League One’s bottom team Hull Ionians.

The latest players to be ruled out are wingers Josh Prell and Scott Jordan, who are both on holiday for the next two games.

Feeley and the club’s selectors assessed a number of players in training on Tuesday evening before naming their line-up for Saturday.

Last week they were forced to name an extremely inexperienced side for the 22-10 defeat at Coventry.

It included two 18-year-olds in the back row and Alex Powell, normally a flanker, making his debut at lock.

“We were almost a stone a man lighter than Coventry and it meant they dominated the set-piece” said Feeley.

“We just couldn’t get any platform from which to play, but I was proud of the way the boys fronted up.

“I was particularly pleased with the way they still tried to play our fast style of rugby whenever we had the ball in the second half. and we scored the best try of the game through Scott Jordan.”

With Jordan and Prell missing, the selectors have reorganised the back division, with Dan Scarbrough and Phil Woodhead filling the wing positions.

Matt Dudman will take over from the versatile Woodhead at scrum half.

There’s a double boost in the front row where skipper Chris Steel returns at prop after recovering from a foot injury, while hooker Dan Stockdale is available to resume his place in the side.

The return after a one-week suspension of No 8 Rob Baldwin means that Josh Burridge moves forward to join Richard Brown in the second row.

Young hooker Luke Cole, who recently returned to training after a hernia operation, is listed among the replacements.

Adam Howard, Chris Howick and Alex Powell, who all started against Coventry, are also on the bench, along with verteran prop Neil Dickinson and young back Will Davidson.

Wharfedale: Nick Taylor; Dan Scarbrough, Joe Donkin, Tom Davidson, Philip Woodhead; Tom Barrett, Matt Dudman; Chris Steel (captain), Dan Stockdale, Jake Armstrong, Richard Brown, Josh Burridge, Jack Barnard, Aaron Myers, Rob Baldwin. Replacements (from): Neil Dickinson, Luke Cole, Adam Howard, Alex Powell, Will Davidson, Chris Howick.

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