Sunday 3rd February 2013  Recreation Ground  Kick Off: 15:00:00

Whitehaven RLFC Squad

York City Knights Squad

Match Preview

Whitehaven `ready for Championship challenge'

Dave Woods believes Whitehaven are ready for the step up as they prepare for life in the Championship.

The former Gateshead, Castleford and York coach is gearing up for his first competitive game in charge of the Cumbrian club.

And he insists his men are ready for the challenge York City Knights will pose on Sunday.

Woods said: "What we've been doing in training has all been about replicating how quick and tough it will be in the Championship.

"This year you've got to make sure you've done everything right in pre-season so that you can hit the ground running."

French international Seb Martins could make his home debut for Whitehaven, while York have doubts over Adam Sullivan (knee) and Luke Stenchion (ankle).

Knights coach Gary Thornton has set his sights on changing the culture within his squad.

He said: "We want to get off to a good start and get rid of the losing culture.

"We've got to sweep that under the carpet and start afresh. We've been keen to make sure we don't have any hangovers from last year."

He added: "We've got some good characters on board, as well as those that were already here, and I'm pretty pleased with how the team's coming together."