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Monday, 24 November 2014

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Whitehaven can Cain it in Championship

A NEW-LOOK Haven are on the cards this season, with a fresh coach, a raft of incoming players and a dual-registration deal with St Helens.

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EXCITING PROSPECT New Haven half-back Cain Southernwood is expected to shine this season MIKE McKENZIE

Dave Woods has taken over from fellow Australian Don Gailer – whose fall from grace came suddenly, but not unexpectedly last year – and has a bolstered squad to push the promoted side on.

Young half-back Cain Southernwood is one player expected to turn heads after joining from Bradford, while the more experienced Jamie Rooney and Neil Thorman will line up alongside him.

Paul Jackson may be 34, but he brings Super League quality to the pack, with Millomite James Newton given a chance to start off his professional career at full-back.

There are no grand ambitions at the Recreation Ground, more realistic targets, and Woods said: “Things are looking good for us and we’re looking forward to it starting.

“We just want to be competitive. We want to make sure that we play well at home and on the road try to pick up the wins where we can and pick up bonus points if we are getting beat. We want to be consistent.

“We want to be around the middle of the field. We don’t want to be down near the bottom. I think if we work hard enough, then we can achieve that.”

Southernwood is one player Woods will be pinning his hopes on – though the agreement with Saints means he will have more options should things not work out with any of his men.

The former Castleford and Gateshead boss believes it is team spirit which will propel them on most, however, and said: “Cain Southernwood is a very good signing and he will help us a lot around the halves.

“Cain has a lot of potential. He likes to take the line on, he likes to get his shoulder in and make contact – his whole game is pretty good.

“Paul Jackson has the experience from Super League and that will help, but what will help us the most is all the boys getting on well and training together well – that will be what we need.”

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