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Adam Blades returns for Huddersfield Rugby Union against Hinckley

Ex All Black Scott Hamilton at Lockwood Park

Adam Blades (right)

Adam Blades returns to action for Huddersfield Rugby Union Club after 14 years away when Hinckley visit tomorrow.

It’s the first National II North match of the season at Lockwood Park (3pm) and coach Gareth Lewis has selected the experienced 35-year-old tight head prop on the bench.

Will Milner and Jonny West are set for home debuts after the 44-36 opening defeat at South Leicester, along with replacement Sam Nunn, while Harry Davey could make his first appearance from the bench on dual registration from Yorkshire Carnegie.

Lewis knows his side face a tough test with Hinckley running in seven tries in a 52-26 battering of Blaydon in their opener, and especially as they have former All Black Scott Hamilton in their line-up – three times a winner of both the Aviva Premiership and Super Rugby titles with Leicester Tigers and Crusaders respectively.

“Despite the result last Saturday the spirits have been incredibly high in the camp this week,” said Lewis, whose opposite number is ex-England and Leicester Tigers hooker George Chuter, now 41.

“The lads loved the challenge of National II rugby and have been determined to improve in training.

“We’ve seen some footage of Hinckley and they look a very physical side, consistently winning the collisions against Blaydon last Saturday.

“Any team with an ex-All Black in their ranks has to be a threat, but it’s another great test for us.”

Hinckley, who finished ninth last season with 14 wins from 30 games, are making their first visit to Lockwood Park.

They have a big senior squad at Leicester Road and have recruited strongly in the summer, aiming to challenge for promotion.

“We can’t wait for Saturday to come,” added Lewis.

Gareth Lewis

“We are hoping for a large crowd in what will no doubt be an emotional day for many people.

“The town is on a real high at the moment with the success of Town in the Premier League – and we’d like to play our small part in that this season.

“It would be great to see some additional support this week considering Town are not in action until Monday night.”

Huddersfield have three senior players out injured.

Experienced centre Mark Pease will be out for six weeks after undergoing ankle surgery, while rampaging forward Callum Thompson is out three weeks (calf) and tryscorer Brandon Conway two weeks (shoulder).

The game at Lockwood Park will be preceded by a minutes silence in memory of Bob Heppleston who passed away in May.

He was Falcons and Academy team manager at Huddersfield and was a highly-respected, selfless and tireless volunteer for the club.

Before the main match there is also a curtain raiser game between Huddersfield’s Under 13s and Crossley Heath School.

This is a memorial game for young Danny Beal, who played rugby for both club and school and passed away in the summer.

Huddersfield RU: Luke Booth, Lewis Workman, Tom Owen, Will Milner, Danny Grainger, Jonny West, Joel Hinchliffe, Alex Battye, Francis Entressengle, Adam Tamanis, Austen Thompson, Adam Malthouse, Declan Thompson, Lewis Bradley, Nick Sharpe. Replacements - Adam Blades, Ben Morrill, Ben Hoyle, Harry Davey, Sam Nunn.

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