Travis Burns the saviour? Hull KR must step up to help debutant against Warrington
FORMER Hull KR star Clint Newton believes it would be unfair for fans to expect Travis Burns to be the saviour of their season.
Burns will make his long-awaited debut for the Robins against Warrington Wolves on Sunday after completing a 12-match ban carried over from his last season in the NRL.
Newton and Burns spent last season at Penrith Panthers together, and the former Robin expects Burns to have a positive impact on KR.
But he says he can't be expected to turn Rovers' fortunes around alone.
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"Travis can't be the saviour on his own," Newton told the Mail.
"Rugby league is a team game and he will need everyone else to help him.
"It's not like golf or tennis when it's you on your own.
"He needs to be playing behind a pack that can be competitive and win the ruck.
"Andrew Johns wouldn't be able to do very much if his pack weren't winning the battle in the middle.
"I know there is a lot of talent in the current KR team and Travis will add to it.
"He is extremely good and a very competitive person who is a good runner of the ball with a good kicking game.
"It would be extremely unfair for Rovers' fans to click their fingers and expect Travis come in and win the next eight games."
Newton, who will be back in England later this year representing USA in the World Cup, has warned the Rovers players to be at their very best when Burns is on the pitch.
He says the stand-off is a perfectionist who won't settle for second best, and who won't be afraid to let his team-mates know if they are falling short of the standards he expects from them.
"Believe me, Travis will let people know how they are doing," Newton said. "Whether it's good or bad, Travis will let them know.
"He trains hard and wants the best on the pitch, where he is a tenacious character.
"He is coming into a team that can attack very well, but their defence needs tidying up. From the outside looking in, it looks as though they need to apply the same amount of pressure in defence as they do in attack.
"I have watched a few of their games and they need to sort their markers out. The defensive line is a lonely place when you are making mistakes and giving away penalties."
However, Newton expects the experienced players to do more to rectify the situation they find themselves in.
"The senior players in that squad need to realise they have a lot of experience behind them," he said.
"Experience is the one thing you can't buy.
"Warrington is a great game for them to show that experience. It won't be easy against a Warrington pack that has been consistent for the last four years or so.
"It's still early days and I hope Rovers can turn things around."