Dons coach explains absence of friendly matches ahead of new season
Doncaster RLFC are unlikely to play any friendlies ahead of the new Betfred League One season.
The Dons will get the delayed 2021 season underway at Keighley Cougars on Sunday, May 9.
They were last in action in March last year and pre-season preparations have been complicated by lockdown restrictions, increasing the risk of injuries during pre-season.
“It’s been hard not to arrange the friendlies but I just wanted the boys to get physically ready for playing before we actually do,” Horne told the Free Press.
“I didn’t want to bring them back too early and risk injuries before our season even gets going.
“I know it’s going to be tough. Keighley will have had four games under their belt before we have round one with them so they’ll be all guns blazing.
"We’ll see where we are at it. It’ll be a good indicator for us.
“We’ve trained really well and as a group we’re at where we need to be and we’ve got a month now to get ready for Keighley.”
Reflecting on preparations for the new season, Horne said: "It’s been tough at times.
“When we started back we only had access to the Keepmoat so we haven’t been able to get in a gym for the boys to be lifting.
“Obviously with gyms being shut the boys haven’t been able to do that in their own time unless they’ve got one in their garage or at their parents’ house. So that’s been fairly tough.
“We’re back at Cantley Park now where we have got gym facilties.”