The race for top spot in the Kingstone Press League One Shield is likely to go down to the wire, Hunslet coach Gary Thornton reckons.

The top-two after the seven extra fixtures will meet in the Shield final, with the league leaders having home advantage. Hunslet remain in pole position despite losing 20-12 at North Wales Crusaders two days ago.

But they have only a one-point lead over London Skolars and North Wales and Thornton said: “Sunday’s defeat wasn’t the end of the world, but we could have made life a lot easier for ourselves if we’d won.

“It has dragged everybody into the mix. Gloucester winning brought them closer and it could all come down to the last game against London.

“We might have to win that to finish top of the group so we have put ourselves under a bit of pressure. It is disappointing – we should have been good enough to win the game and we weren’t.”

Thornton admitted: “We never got going, there was no tempo to the game and we never got any rhythm. They didn’t do anything special, they took us on in the middle with their big forwards and we didn’t counter that and when we got chances in good ball we didn’t take the right options.”

Matt Cook suffered concussion and is in doubt for Saturday’s visit of Gloucestershire All Golds.

Article courtesy of the Yorkshire Evening Post