Skipper Murrell is out of Northern Rail Cup showdown

Scott Murrell
Scott Murrell

Halifax coach Karl Harrison has ruled captain Scott Murrell out of tomorrow’s Northern Rail Cup game at Dewsbury.

Murrell, arguably the best player outside Super League during the spring, sat out last Friday’s Challenge Cup loss at Sheffield with a hamstring problem.

“Murrell won’t be fit, we’ve already ruled him out,” said Harrison, who added that he ‘hoped” the former Hull KR playmaker would be back for the league date at Sheffield on Friday week.

“It’s disappointing, because he’s been superb for us, but it is what it is.

“We’ll just get on with it.”

Murrell’s absence will see Paul Handforth and Anthony Thackeray resume their combination at half back, with Harrison optimistic the pairing would perform better than it did in the Steel City.

“The timing was everything last week; we had to change the way we played just before kick off,” he said.

“In fairness to Handforth, he hadn’t trained in the halves for two months because he’s been so good at hooker.

“They’ll be better for a week’s practice.”

Craig Ashall is virtually guaranteed to start the game at hooker.