JAMES FORD says that his York City Knights side are looking forward to the test that will be provided by at the Betfred Championship's early season leaders Leigh Centurions.

Leigh's hybrid squad of part-timers and full-timers have opened the year with two strong wins over Dewsbury Rams and Sheffield Eagles - scoring an impressive 94 points in total.

The Centurions finished fourth in the competition last year and, like York, eventually lost out to Featherstone Rovers in the play-offs.

Since then, Leigh have added several youngsters from Wigan Warriors as well as proven experience in Hull KR's Danny Addy and Matty Wildie from Bradford Bulls.

It's the attack that Ford sees as Leigh's most dangerous weapon, particularly on their edges.

"They're a very good side," said the Knights head coach. "I've watched them a few times this year.

"Their shifts are certainly well thought out and well executed and they really come at you with depth and pace.

"We've had a good look at that and we've had to formulate some defensive plans for those shifts.

"They're very aggressive too when they get teams in corners and they try and hunt you down with really aggressive line speed and contact.

"I'm sure that they will put us under some pressure at the weekend.

"We're looking forward to the challenge and we fancy ourselves as a decent side also.

"And, we'll go there and put our best foot forward.

"In the two league games and the friendly of them that I've watched, they shift the ball really well.

"They're a well-coached side and John (Duffy) has clearly put some thought into where they play from and what they're doing, chasing that last man back, flooding the seven on five and there's going to be some fight on the floor to be able to play quickly too.

"Generally, we know that they're a very good side.

"We know that we'll need to be up at our very best to give ourselves the best opportunity to be able to take the league points."

York did the double over Leigh last year, winning both league games by a solitary point.

The Knights won 9-8 in March and prevailed 24-23 at the Leigh Sports Village in September.

Does Ford take confidence from the victories?

"Not really," he said. "Last year has gone and it's now a completely different scenario with two different sets of players.

"We can't use last year's results at all. It's a different competition.

"We know that we'll be thoroughly tested by a very good side and we're looking forward to it.

Connor Robinson scored the winning field goal in the first of those wins over Leigh, though he will be unavailable due to suspension. Matty Marsh is set to take his half-back spot.

Robinson limped off injured against Toulouse and the scan revealing he's expected to be fit for the trip to London Broncos on February 22.

"We've had some very good news on Connor," Ford said. "We've had his scan back and it shows very, very little damage to one of the ligaments in his knee.

"It's a Grade 4, which is pretty much a 'get up and carry on playing', which is extremely lucky.

"Having looked back on the tackle, it wasn't nice and we were pretty fearful.

"Now it's just a process of easing Connor back into training."

Winger Perry Whiteley is a doubt for the game.

"Perry is still having some discomfort with his injury so he's going for a scan tomorrow (Friday)," Ford added.

"Although he could play, he's still feeling a little bit of soreness when he does certain activities.

York squad: Marsh, Whiteley, Keinhorst, Salter, Sharp, Johnston, Jubb, Teanby, Scott, Spears, Brining, Green, Clarkson, Porter, Baldwinson, Stock, Bass, Hey, Jordan-Roberts, Wallis, Harrison.