FANS will return to Derwent Park on Sunday for the first time since before the Covid-19 pandemic as Workington Town face Doncaster RLFC – a “sterner” test than previous opponents.

Chris Thorman’s pack will look to continue their run of good form, having triumphed over Hunslet, London Skolars and North Wales Crusaders in their first three games of the League 1 season.

They collide with Doncaster who have topped West Wales Raiders and Rochdale Hornets in their last two games, the only blemish on their record so far being a 44-18 defeat to Keighley Cougars in round one.

Thorman said: “We’re expecting a sterner test than we’ve had in the last three games, that’s for sure, but we’ll prepare for that.

“We’ll find out where we’re at. I’m not one for getting ahead of ourselves.”

He added that a win may not be vital come September but that the game is an opportunity for Town to test themselves against a top squad.

Workington’s head coach said that fans will be welcome back in the stands. “That’s probably the most exciting part of it all – it’s been a long time coming and I’ve seen first hand the contribution of our fans over the last 12 months, how they’ve contributed in different ways, financially, the support volunteering down at the club. I’m very grateful for it.”

“It’s going to be a reward” Thorman said.

Speaking of the positive atmosphere at the club, he said: “We’ve been in a good place for a while but that’s just the hard work and making sure we have a squad the community can be proud of – a bunch of lads that are willing to do what it takes.”

Thorman added that the squad of 32 plus loan signings means that training sessions can be more effective, including simulating the opponents’ style.

“It just allows us to do lots of different training methods. We’ve previewed Doncaster’s offensive shape. That’s something that as a coach, I’ve always tried to do.”