Chris Thorman couldn’t hide his delight yet still says he wants improvement after Town defied injuries and a sin-binning to begin their 2021 league campaign with a gutsy 28-16 win at highly fancied Hunslet.

The Workington boss reflected: “Getting two points away from home in our first game for 14 months against the side who are among the leading contenders to get promotion means I have to feel positive.

“The way we managed the middle third of the field was good considering we lost our star loose forward (Hanley Dawson) midway through the first half, which affects your interchanges, and then lost Dec O’Donnell in the second half.

“We also had a man sin-binned so I felt we managed the game really well.

“We will see how Hanley’s knee settles down over the next couple of days and, if it’s still swollen, he will probably go for a scan as we think it’s medial ligament damage.

“The best case scenario is probably three or four weeks.

“Dec and our medics thought at first that he had dislocated his shoulder but it seems it was just a ‘stinger’ - pain damage down his arm and he managed to go back on for the last ten minutes.

“Apart from that, we have a couple more bumps and bruised but should be OK.”

Thorman made special mention of two of several debutants, continuing: “Matty Henson rolled his ankle but had it strapped up on the field and I thought he was very good considering this was his first game at this level, while Brad Holroyd was also excellent.”

“I know what this team are capable of and I’m sure we can still show a lot of improvement.”

Both of Hunslet’s first half tries were from close range around the ruck and Thorman admitted: “I think we need a little bit of work on our try-line D (defence) and try-line marker play. But the injuries and the sin-binning took it’s toll on our rotation so I can’t be too critical.”