Laverick hoping to help Rhinos through to Grand Final

After missing the first four months of the season through injury, former Dewsbury Moor player, Madison Laverick, is keen to make up for lost time and help her team secure a place back in the Grand Final.

“It feels really good to be back and doesn’t feel like I have been away in some ways,” said Laverick.  “It was difficult to miss the start of the season and I was gutted to miss out on the Cup Final but we still have ambitions for the Grand Final so hopefully I can be involved with this.

“Myself and Lois Forsell, who has been injured all season alongside me, had what we called Rehab Club and we supported each other and pushed each other on, so it was good to have someone with me who understood what I was going through.  Lois has been a big help and an inspiration to me.  I’ve never had an injury before so never really appreciated how tough it was.  I have grown very close to Lois over the last few months and we message each other regularly and offer support.

“A lot of my rehab was working on my upper body strength and strengthening my ligaments around my ankle and me and Lois would always be on the bikes working on fitness.  I lost quite a bit of strength but I am now able to squat more than I was before so I am feeling good.”

Madison joined the Rhinos last year to play in the Academy, but after just four games into the season had done enough to earn a call up to the first team to make her debut against Castleford.

To aid her recovery she went back to her Academy roots to play in their game against Bradford and said she was impressed with the standard at the club.

“I played a game back in the Academy to help me return to fitness and I found it tough, we played Bradford and the standard was really good at that leve,” she said.  “The players in the Academy are doing well and pushing for a place in Super League.

“It’s been great to see the likes of Fran Goldthorp come in from the Academy, she hasn’t looked out of place, Keara Bennett developing at hooker with support from Lois and recently Paige Webster.  Paige is someone who I have played quite a bit with before, she is vocal and a strong player and has been pushing for a while and deserves her place in the squad.”

In their last game, Adam Cuthbertson’s team earned a draw against second place St Helens and are now certain of a play-off spot once the regular season comes to a close at the end of September.

“We are taking the positives from our game against St Helens.  They are a top side and to get the draw was better than a loss.  We know the areas we need to improve on from that game and are doing the extras and hopefully we can keep improving.

“The team are working hard and have lots of motivation to get back to the Grand Final.  We have lots of people supporting us and who want us to succeed.  I think we are in a stronger place than this time last year, we have had more time together, have gelled more and know how to play with each other.  The intensity in training has definitely upped this year and we are in good shape heading into these final games.”

In their next game the Women’s team face Wakefield, who are at the foot of the table in their first season in Super League, but Laverick is not underestimating their local rivals.

“I think Wakefield have come on leaps and bounds this season, they had some tough defeats earlier this season with big scores against them, but last week played the league leaders Castleford and held them to 36 points.  I’m expecting quite a bit from them, I know a few of the girls who have pushed on this season for them and are doing well so we won’t be slacking off against them and know we have to be at our best.”