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Blow for Knights as Hull's Danny Nicklas likely to be recalled
YORK City Knights are bracing themselves for more half-back headaches after Hull indicated they were likely to recall Danny Nicklas this weekend.
The 20-year-old dual-reg starlet enjoyed a fine debut for the Knights ten days ago when they beat Swinton Lions to get off the mark in the Co-operative Championship.
The club hoped he would be allowed to remain at Huntington Stadium for the rest of the season, with one eye on signing him permanently for the 2013 campaign.
However, that display might also have caught the eye of his parent club, Hull, as he has seemingly edged ahead of Jamie Ellis in their pecking order as cover for crocked hooker Danny Houghton – much to York’s chagrin.
Knights player-boss Chris Thorman said: “It’s possible he’ll be playing in the first team for Hull this weekend. For our sake we would really like him not to, but for him, it’s a big deal, playing for the first team in Super League so, if that’s the case, we’d wish him well.”
Stand-off Thorman, who has had no fewer than six half-back partners to date this year, with Nicklas brought in after Castleford dual-reg starlet Ben Johnston broke a thumb, had hoped to keep an unchanged team for Friday night’s tough trip to Sheffield Eagles.
However, he is now bracing himself for confirmation of this one enforced change.
He said: “We should know before training (tomorrow). It would be a huge blow to us if we don’t have him. It’s been a problem position all year – someone to play alongside me, kick the ball, manage the game, take the line on and organise.
“We’ve found a really good candidate in Danny – he’s a really good player – but he’s been there or thereabouts all year at Hull.”
Nicklas’ likely return to the KC Stadium follows injury to Hull’s regular hooker, Danny Houghton, while utility ace Danny Horne remains a doubt.
Houghton limped out of their last game, against Wakefield, with a knee problem and withdrew from the England Knights party for their match against Ireland at the weekend, and, while it has not been confirmed how long he will be sidelined for, his run of 72 consecutive appearances for the Black and Whites will come to an end this weekend. Horne missed the Wakefield game with a groin injury.
The Black and Whites finally have Kiwi star Aaron Heremaia available to take over the number nine shirt for their trip to Warrington on Sunday – he has recovered from a career-threatening neck injury in pre-season – but Nicklas is still set to be recalled as cover in the pivots.