YORK Knights boss Andrew Henderson concedes that his side were second best in every department to a strong Wakefield Trinity in Sunday's AB Sundecks 1895 Cup group stage match.

A hat-trick from former Halifax Panthers winger Lachlan Walmsley and Max Jowitt’s near-perfect performance from the tee saw Daryl Powell taste a 40-4 victory in his first competitive match in charge of the West Yorkshire club.

“I think that if we’re being honest, we were second best in every department,” said Henderson. “There’s no doubt about that.”

REPORT: Wakefield Trinity prove too strong for York Knights in 1895 Cup

Powell fielded the strongest team at his disposal, evidenced by the 1-13 on his side’s teamsheet, and that showed as Trinity raced into a commanding 18-point lead with just 11 minutes on the clock.

A quick-fire double at the start of the second half ensured the game moved further out of the Knights’ reach in what was the first true test of Henderson’s new-look side, with Will Jubb's 70th-minute score a mere consolation.

“I think that we understood what we were coming up against,” the Knights boss said of their full-time opponents, heavy favourites for an immediate return to the sport's top-flight.

“It was a full-strength Wakefield side, who as we know, are a Super League operation and a Super League outfit.

“We knew that it was always going to be a challenge.”

York Press: York found it tough going against a Wakefield pack that seemed notably stronger and quicker than themselves.York found it tough going against a Wakefield pack that seemed notably stronger and quicker than themselves. (Image: Craig Hawkhead)

Henderson admits that he did expect a little bit more from his side, whom he believes displayed all the hallmarks of a team playing in their first real competitive match of the new season.

“Did I expect a little bit better from us? Yes. But what I will say is that it was our first genuine competitive fixture and I think that you could see that in our performance.

“You could see that we were a little bit clunky at times with the ball, defensively, I thought that we were a little bit loose at times around the ruck area.

“I think it looked like a team, for me, that was having their first proper pre-season game or hit-out so to speak.

“We’ve come up against an outfit that were ready for this one, or a bit more better prepared for this game than we were.

“But we’ve got a plan in place for what we want to do to try and progress and be ready for Round One of the Championship.”

RECAP: York Knights 4-40 Wakefield Trinity - 1895 Cup

The Knights boss also sees the match as a learning curve for his side, with Trinity likely to set the benchmark this season.

“Overall, I’m pleased with how we managed that second half a little bit better and kept the scoreline respectable-ish to a degree.

“It’s a good learning curve for  some of those younger guys out there who have never probably been exposed to this sort of level.

“And it’s a good learning curve again for the team. Wakefield are going to be the benchmark this year, so we know we’ve got a bit of work to do.”