Hooker Sam Dowsett has credited a spell returning to his roots at Askam with firing him up for a second crack at professional rugby league with Whitehaven.

Work commitments meant his spell with Workington Town during the 2017 League One season came to a premature end, with the goal-kicking hooker making only seven appearances for the clubs.

But after having to cut his time there short, Dowsett found himself settling quickly back into life at Fallowfield Park, helping Askam reach the National Conference League Division Two play-offs two years running and lift last year’s Barton Townley Cup.

Now he is ready to embark on his second stint in the professional ranks after accepting an offer to join Haven under new coach Gary Charlton and credits his time back with the club he had been a part of from the under-eights right through to open-age level as being crucial to earning another shot.

“It was a year out I needed, just with a difficult start at Workington,” said Dowsett.

“It was work commitments which put a downer on things at Workington, but I really enjoyed my time there and the training in the pro game.

“But getting back to Askam, it just made me want it that extra bit more.

"It was being around my mates and enjoying my rugby, and I wanted to give it a go with Whitehaven.”

There will be a few familiar faces around to help Dowsett make the transition this time too.

Not only has Askam loose forward Tom Wilkinson joined Whitehaven, but assistant Jonty Gorley was on the coaching staff at Workington during his time there.

Indeed, those previous experiences helped when Gorley contacted Dowsett asking if he would be interested in joining them at the Recreation Ground.

“When Jonty gave me the call and asked me to go up for a chat the first time at Workington, I was going up and worried with it being the environment of a formal chat, not knowing what to do or say, or anything like that,” said Dowsett.

“This time around, because I know Jonty, it was just a general chat and a lot calmer, and I was a lot more taken in with what was going on, what they were offering and things like that.

“First time, I just jumped at the chance and just wanted to get into the pro game.

"This time, it was a lot more chilled and I put more in and listened to what they had to offer and what they were looking to for the season.”