Mickey Paea: 'Wigan clash chance to see how Hull KR are shaping up'
MICKEY Paea believes this weekend's clash with Wigan is the perfect chance to see how well Rovers' rejuvenated squad are shaping up.
Having off-loaded a number of familiar names in the off-season, Craig Sandercock's squad now features a number of promising youngsters who have emerged through the ranks.
Whilst the Robins' new signings do bring some much-needed experience, Paea has been buoyed by the new generation, who combined well to win 22-8 at Gateshead at the weekend.
With some of those young players expected to retain their places for the visit of Wigan on Sunday, he believes their youthful exuberance can compensate for the departure of more experienced players.
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"We have lost some great players and leaders," Paea told the Mail. "But what we lack in experience we can make up for in enthusiasm.
"The young players are putting their hands up and we all feed off that. Everyone is buying into the systems put in place by Craig.
"We have a new group of players, it's younger but it's exciting.
"There is a great feeling around the place at the moment and hopefully we can come good."
Like the majority of the senior squad, Paea was rested by Sandercock for the visit to Gateshead but he is expected to figure against last season's Minor Premiers.
Facing a Wigan side which found a good level of consistency in 2012, Rovers are aiming to do likewise this season after picking up just one win from their last 10 games.
Paea is still hurting from the way Rovers' season petered out last year and he is determined to make sure they don't fall short of their goals this time around.
"It's always disappointing to finish the season like we did," he said.
"We all trained and worked so hard this time last year to make the play-offs.
"We set goals and we fell short of achieving them.
"That was very disappointing but in saying that, we are moving on and leaving last season behind us."
If Rovers are to have a successful campaign, they need Paea to be at the top of his game for the duration of it.
He was the Robins' only ever-present last season with 17 starts and 10 appearances off the bench.
And he knows what must be done to improve this time around.
He added: "Collectively, we need to win more games than last season. We have to put in better performances.
"It's always refreshing coming into a new season.
"New players have come in and we have new goals and we have plenty of things to aspire to.
"I don't want to dwell on last season but we have to turn things around."