Emphasis on youth at Rams

Hull KR v Catalan Dragons.  Engage Super League XII. 'Makali Aizue i8s stopped by Clint Greenshields with Casey McGuirer in support.
Hull KR v Catalan Dragons. Engage Super League XII. 'Makali Aizue i8s stopped by Clint Greenshields with Casey McGuirer in support.

DEWSBURY Rams look set to have one of the youngest squads in the Co-operative Championship next season as new coach Glenn Morrison puts the emphasis firmly on up-and coming talent.

Morrison was coach of Wakefield Trinity’s Under-20s squad who reached the end-of-season play-offs last season and the average age of his current crop of players at Dewsbury is just 23.

Morrison has 22 players currently signed on, 11 who have re-signed at Tetley’s Stadium, with the other 11 players who the Australian has brought in during a hectic spell since he took over last month.

Just two players are over the age of 30, with prop Makali Aizue the oldest in the squad at 34 and fellow forward Ryan Hepworth 31.

Seasoned utility forward Tommy Gallagher is 29, while Morrison will look to the likes of last season’s captain Austin Buchanan (28) and second row or centre Rob Spicer (28) to give his side experience.

Callan Beckett is the youngest member to have signed at just 19, while the Rams have four 20-year-olds, five players aged 21, another four at 22 and three at 24.

Further signings are expected in the coming weeks as Morrison continues the rebuilding process before they return to pre-season training in early November.

Greg Scott became the latest to pledge his future to the Rams when he penned a new deal to remain at Tetley’s Stadium last week.

The 21-year-old former Widnes man showed great promise in his first season and although his favoured position was in the centres, he often came inside, showing his willingness to take the ball forward.

Morrison said: “Greg played in four different positions last year and wasn’t really given the opportunity to knuckle down and show what he is capable of.

“He is a player with plenty of pace and I’m pleased to have him on board for next year.

“I see Greg as a centre and I believe that with the right backing we’ll see a lot from him in 2013.”

Scott’s re-signing came hot on the heels of Morrison’s swoop for quality 20-year-olds Aaron Brown from Leeds Rhinos and St Helens second rower Scott Hale.

With Super League no longer running an Under-20s competition next season, many of the game’s top youngsters are facing a cull from top-flight clubs and are facing the prospect of dropping into the Co-operative Championships next season.

Morrison’s knowledge of that competition will certainly come in handy as he looks to snap up further players to complete his squadbuilding.