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Burrow targets Rovers return

Leeds Rhinos' injured hooker Rob Burrow is hoping to be fit and available for head coach Brian McDermott for their mid-July Super League clash against Hull KR.

The 31-year-old is currently sidelined for the league leaders after breaking his collarbone in their Tetley's Challenge Cup win over St Helens last month.

Burrow has undergone surgery to repair the displacement and the England international still needs another four weeks for the bone to heal completely.

When asked how the injury was progressing, Burrow told Sky Sports: "It's going well. It's one of those injuries that you can't do much about a broken bone. You've got to wait for it to heal.

"I'm four weeks since the operation so another four weeks for the bone to heal. Then it's just a matter of getting fit, getting my shoulder built up again.

"At this stage of four weeks from the op I'm well in front, but you've got to gauge it on where you after the bone has healed.

"We've looked at mid-July. I think we've got Hull KR the second week in July. So off the top of my head I thought that would be ideal to come back for."

With Burrow and fellow hooker Paul Aiton out of action McDermott gave a debut to teenager Robbie Ward for last week's top-flight clash against Hull FC.

The 18-year-old was given the nod after Chris Clarkson and Carl Ablett has previously filled in and the youngster impressed while also getting his name on the scoresheet in a 20-6 success.

"It's a shame that myself and Paul (Aiton) are injured, but it gives an opportunity to young Robbie Ward, who started last week," he continued.

Opportunity

"It was his first game. A big game for him to be called up for, which was a bit like me back in 2003. You have to wait for opportunities with people getting injured. It's an opportunity for him to show what he can do.

"He's got to grasp his opportunity while he can. It's all about having a strong squad and a strong youth system, which Leeds have.

"I thought he did well. He's a physical lad even though he's only small. He likes the physical side. He handles it. You've got to handle that defence and that's something he thrives on."

Leeds find themselves top of the Super League table despite suffering a Magic Weekend loss to champions Wigan Warriors and Burrow is pleased with his things are progressing.

"At the moment things are going really, really well. We've got a great squad, another year with the squad together. Tom's come in and done a fantastic job.

"Things are going well at the moment. We're not getting carried away because it is a long, long season and we've shown that it doesn't matter too much where you finish in the league.

"We want to stay top. We want to continue our form into the play-offs. While we're happy with our form at this stage we're not getting carried away."

Burrow is contracted to Leeds for another season and he hopes to play at least until he is 35, meaning Rhinos fans could see him in a club jersey for the foreseeable future.

"Prior to the injury I was feeling fit and sharp, which is what I'm all about. If my pace goes then I'm knackered," he concluded.

"I've got another year at least. I've got a goal of playing until 35 so there are hopefully a couple more years after this for me. We'll have to see what happens."

You can watch how Leeds Rhinos get on without Burrow on Friday night when they take on Warrington Wolves live on Sky Sports 1 from 7.30pm