YORK RU could have a couple of aces up their sleeves as they launch their cross-code assault on the York International 9s.

The Evening Press believes the Clifton Park club have been working on trying to secure the temporary signings of two well-known dual-code players to bolster their squad for the two-day festival.

However, York will have to wait until the last-minute to find out whether the pair - who have been playing union during the winter and league during the summer at high levels - will get clearance to play.

And with a mouth-watering curtain-raiser against the York Ironsides, made up of the cream of the amateur RL circuit, the union boys have the perfect incentive to throw down the gauntlet to their rival sport.

York have already managed to secure the inclusion of gas-man Rob Kama, despite his summer jaunt into the league code with the York City Knights, while Coventry-based former wingman James Black has agreed to step into the breach.

However, despite the obvious desire to make their mark on the 'opposition sport', team manager Allan Robertshaw, who is running the team alongside Micky Negri, believes the side are just in the competition to enjoy it.

"It was done as a publicity stunt to begin with, so we have just told the lads to go out and enjoy themselves," said Robertshaw. "We haven't really had any time to train together, but we are hoping to win a couple of games, so it is basically about going out and enjoying it.

"There is a bit of trepidation about facing the Ironsides with all the sponsorship and kit that they have been getting, but we just want to go out there and put in a good performance."

The wily Sean Bass and the dependable Mark Roberts will add their experience to the backline, while the Arkle brothers - James and Sam - and the versatile Stu Davies will look to take their good form from the season on to the league circuit.

York RUFC squad: Rob Kama, Mark Roberts, James Arkle, Sam Arkle, Ian Davies, Sean Bass, Stu Davies, Rob Taylor, James Black, Gareth Thomas, Nathan Savage.

Updated: 12:27 Friday, June 20, 2003