Dickinson settling nicely into life at the Eagles
Sheffield Eagles prop forward Tyler Dickinson has played in the club’s first two matches of 2021 and is enjoying life in South Yorkshire.
Dickinson made the move to Sheffield from fellow Championship club Batley Bulldogs in the off-season and has hit the ground running in a big forward pack.
A prolonged pre-season was put in place by Mark Aston and his coaching staff and Dickinson is certainly happy to see the back of that.
After being asked about his first few months at the club, Dickinson said: “I am loving it,”
“The pre-season was way too long for my liking, almost five months, but it gave us plenty of time to get ready.
"All the work Mark (Aston) and the coaching staff have done with us is starting to bear fruit and we saw that in the Bradford game.
“Hopefully that’s just the start as the boys are happy and it’s a good group to be around.”
Dickinson made his Eagles debut against this weekend’s opponents, York City Knights, in the Challenge Cup last month.
Sheffield were beaten 30-6 at the Keepmoat Stadium but Dickinson said there were a few highlights to be taken out of the game, for both himself and the team.
”I felt like I was a bit scratchy in the York game first up but that was going to happen after playing two games in 18 months,” he added.
“It was important to realise the positives against York. We did plenty of good stuff and many people, including myself, thought the final score wasn’t a fair reflection.
"We let in a couple of sloppy tries and I was party to one of them. We still took the positives out of the game.”
The Eagles bounced back in style after the cup defeat by beating Bradford 50-12 in the first match of the league season.
It was a game where “everything came together” according to Dickinson, who was impressed that the team didn’t take their eye off the ball despite having a big lead in the second half.
“Now we’re two games in, everyone needs to be hitting their straps and I’m always a guy who’s looking to improve,” he said.
“We kept the pressure on (vs Bradford), we were relentless and weathered the storm that they hit us with just after half-time.
“It’s easy when you’re running away with the game to start falling in love with yourself but we didn’t.
“It was pleasing and an enjoyable one to play in.”
Moving on to Sunday and the rematch against York - this time away from home at the LNER Community Stadium - there is a chance for the Eagles to put a statement out to the rest of the Championship if they come up with a good performance.
Although the Knights are stacked with big-names and ex-Super League and overseas talent, Dickinson says the Eagles’ concentration has to be on their own game.
“It’s one of those matches you want to play in, especially with some of the signings they have made and their Super League pedigree,” Dickinson added.
“It’s an opportunity to put a marker down. It’s our performance before anything and if we get that right, the result takes care of itself.
“The boys are looking forward to it and it should be a good, entertaining game for the fans to watch.”
The Eagles’ fixture against York this Sunday will be live-streamed on #OurLeague. You can buy an early-bird pass for £4.95 from rugby-league.com/livestream
The game starts at 7:30pm with the broadcast starting at 7:15pm.
By Dan Fowler, photo by Alex Coleman