BOWDEN ENJOYING HEALTHY COMPETITION
By Matt Holden | 21/02/2014
Prop Josh Bowden says he must take his opportunity to impress head coach Lee Radford with both hands in the coming weeks as he looks to secure his place in the side.
Following a promising pre-season campaign, the young front-rower starred in last week’s 36-34 victory over Catalan Dragons at the KC Stadium and is again expected to feature from the bench against St Helens this evening.
Admitting his place in the pack has come at the expense of injured forwards Chris Green and Liam Watts, the England Knights international says he must make it as tough as possible for the duo to fight their way back into the side.
“I’d never want one of my teammates to get injured, or any other player for that matter, but because of their injuries I’ve been given an opportunity in the side and it’s up to me to take it now,” Bowden told www.hullfc.com
“I was reasonably happy with how I went in pre-season and I’ve been training hard. They say that props don’t reach their peak until their late 20s and I’ve only just turned 22 but it’s still time I nailed down a regular place in the team.
“Radders has made it clear that if you are playing well, you’ll keep getting picked. It’s up to me now to take this chance and make sure that when the other lads are fit, I don’t deserve to be dropped.
“There’s a lot of competition for places in the front row but I’ve only ever seen that as a good thing.”
Coming off the bench alongside Feka Paleaaesina in last week’s thrilling win against the Dragons, Bowden says the Black and Whites can take confidence from the way they handled a physical Catalan pack.
However, expecting more of the same against St Helens at Langtree Park tonight, the former Hull Wyke amateur says his side must improve if they are to maintain their winning start to the season.
“We let ourselves down in the last 20 minutes of the game last week. The hard work at the beginning of the second half doesn’t count for anything if we let that many tries in towards the end,” he added.
“I think we’ve put that right at training this week though and we’re looking forward to Saints. They had a good win themselves last week and it will be a good contest.
“They went at Warrington through the middle, they dominated up front and they look like they’ve found a good half back in Luke Walsh. We’ve got to be physical and stop them getting on the front foot.”