Rovers prepare for maiden final

Featherstone Rovers captain Stuart Dickens is urging his team-mates to make the most of their opportunity this Sunday, as they prepare to face Halifax in the final of the Northern Rail Cup (Featherstone 4/11 – Northern Rail Cup Final outright).

This weekend’s date in Blackpool marks the Rovers’ first appearance in a Northern Rail Cup final, which is a remarkable stat given their their recent dominance of the Championship, the competition below the Super League.

Featherstone have aspirations to make the step up to the top level in the years ahead, but for now their focus remains trained on lifting more of the silverware currently available to them.

“We’ve had some tough defeats in the Northern Rail Cup in recent years and are all absolutely delighted to be in the 2012 final,” said Dickens, a veteran of the Rovers squad and an imposing presence in the pack.

“It’s taken a long time to get where we are now both on and off the field and a lot of that is down to our coach Daryl Powell and chairman Mark Campbell. But we must take this opportunity.”

Featherstone sit two points ahead of Halifax in the league table and appear well placed to defend the Championship trophy and League Leaders Shield they earned in 2011.

But their opponents this weekend have enjoyed a strong season so far as well, and have hit the half-century mark in their last two matches.

Halifax are coached by former international star Karl Harrison, who guided the last club he coached, Batley, to an odds-defying Northern Rail Cup Final win over Widnes in 2010 (Halifax 2/1 – Northern Rail Cup Final outright).

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