By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: January 11, 2014
NEVILLE Costigan admits it’s proving hard work to get his fitness up to where his Hull KR team-mates are, but insists he’ll be fully fit for round one.
Handed an extended break by the Robins following his involvement in the World Cup with Papua New Guinea, the back row forward only began pre-season training after Christmas.
Neville Costigan in action for Papua New Guinea in this summer's World Cup.
The 28-year-old wants to lose another four kilos to be ready for the new season, but has still set his sights on facing Leeds in KR’s February 16 opener.
“I need a couple of more weeks to get up to speed with the other boys,” Costigan told the Mail.
“It’s been hard catching up with them but I’m getting there.
“They had been training for two months before I arrived so I have to get my head down and do some extras in my own time.
“I had a long season last year with Newcastle Knights and Papua New Guinea so I needed that time off to spend quality time with my family.
“It has helped me to feel fresh and I came back a week earlier than I should have to get ready for my first season in Super League.
“I still have some work to do before I’m ready, but I will be okay for the first game.”
Costigan is experienced enough to know training in pre-season can get your fitness so far, but it’s matches that really matter.
That’s why the two pre-season friendlies against Hull FC and Huddersfield will be important to him and the rest of the squad.
“You can run all you like in training, but games are where your match fitness comes from,” he said.
“Right now my body feels good and I feel great overall.
“I’ll definitely be ready for the first game of the season.
“The friendlies are going to be very important to me because I can lay down a marker and do my best to impress the coaches.
“If I do my job consistently, then I should be okay.”
Costigan’s versatility should be a big asset to coach Craig Sandercock in the season ahead as he can play in the back or front row.
He started two of the three World Cup games at loose forward and the other at prop, but admits the tournament had one major negative.
“It was nice to captain my country for the first time, but it would have been a lot better had we beat someone,” he added.
“I prefer to play in the back row rather than prop but we’ll have to see where I play for Rovers.”
Read more: http://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/Hull-KR-s-Neville-Costigan-m-heavy-ll-ready/story-20428293-detail/story.html#ixzz2q84TXTBL