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Cockayne pens Hull KR contract extension

Long-serving Hull Kingston Rovers winger or full back Ben Cockayne has signed a new contract extension that could take him through to his tenth season with the club.

Credit: Press Association

The former England Knights international was out of contract at the end of the current campaign and has put pen to paper on a new one-year deal with a further one-year option that could keep him at the KC Lightstream Stadium until the end of 2017.

Cockayne has made 180 appearances and scored 68 tries in his two spells with the Robins and having re-joined Rovers last season after playing for Wakefield Trinity Wildcats, he said he’s happy to commit his future to a club that means so much.

From my point of view, I just wanted to keep playing for a club that has been a big part of my life for all kind of reasons. I’m very appreciative for all they’ve done for me and it’s a privilege to be able to contribute for hopefully another couple of years.

– Ben Cockayne

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Robins release charity version of 80s hit to mark Wembley final appearance

Hull Kingston Rovers have teamed up with 80's chart stars Erasure to record a special edition version of their song "A Little Respect" to mark the club's appearance in this month's Challenge Cup final, with all proceeds going to charity.

80's chart stars Erasure

The song, which features vocals from the club's first team squad as well as the original backing track from the band, is available to download now for just 99p from iTunes (other stores to follow soon), with proceeds split between Freddie's Friends, Downright Special and the Terrence Higgins Trust.

Organised jointly by Hull KR, Erasure, their management, BMG Records and Sony/ATV Music Publishing, the charity single is expected to prove popular with Robins supporters celebrating a first Challenge Cup Final appearance in almost 30 years after they adopted the song as the club's second anthem in recent weeks.

Social media footage of Rovers fans singing along to the tune after the recent semi-final victory over Warrington first attracted Erasure lead singer Andy Bell's attention to the club and that connection is set to strengthen on the road to Wembley after the players recorded a charity version at local studio Fruit Trade Music.

"When I saw the video of the Hull KR fans singing the song together and the club contacted me to ask if they could re-release it for charity, it was an easy decision.

"It's fantastic to see what the song means to those fans and I couldn't believe how many of them were singing along who wouldn't have even been born when the song was originally released.

"The proceeds are going to three fantastic causes so I hope people get behind it and download the track. I'll be keeping a close eye on the Cup Final result on August 29th and wish everyone at the club the best of luck."

– Andy Bell, Erasure singer

The special-edition version of "A Little Respect" will now become the club's official song for the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup Final against Leeds Rhinos at Wembley on Saturday, 29th August, with representatives of the charities joining the players and coaching staff in the studio this week to record the song and the track's official music video.

"We've seen over the past couple of weeks how our supporters have really taken this song to their hearts, especially during the celebrations after our semi-final victory.

"When Andy Bell uploaded his own tribute video to the club after the game, everything went one step further and the song has gone on to encapsulate a very special moment for the club on this season's run to Wembley.

"Red, Red Robin will always be the traditional anthem associated with Hull Kingston Rovers and that will never change but we also wanted to celebrate a special connection between Erasure's song and our club this season.

"Recording a special edition of the track before the Challenge Cup Final with all the proceeds going to charity seemed like the perfect option.

"It's taken a lot of hard work to get the necessary permission for this project and our thanks go out to Erasure's management team, BMG Records and Sony/ATV Music Publishing for their support, as well as our players and the people at Fruit Trade Music for getting involved.

"It's now down to our supporters and music fans to play their part in helping to raise money for three very worthy causes by downloading the track. Given the excitement around the club for the Challenge Cup Final and their love for this song, I'm sure the charity single will prove very popular."

– Mike Smith, Hull KR CEO

Proceeds from the new edition of "A Little Respect" will be split between the Terrence Higgins Trust, a charity nominated by Andy Bell which supports people with HIV, and Hull KR's joint Charities of the Year for 2015 Downright Special and Freddie's Friends.

The club's charity edition of "A Little Respect" is available to download now for just 99p from iTunes. It will also be available on Google Play shortly.

Rovers will also be producing 100 limited-edition vinyl copies and these will be available to order online in the near future atwww.hullkr.co.uk/shop priced at £15.

All vinyl copies will be available to collect after the Challenge Cup final and £5 from each copy sold will be donated to the charities.

Larroyer given one-match ban

Kevin Larroyer given one-match ban Credit: Press Association

Hull Kingston Rovers' second-rower Kevin Larroyer has been given a one-match ban after admitting a shoulder charge during his side's defeat in the Hull derby.

The French international submitted an early-guilty plea after being charged by the Rugby Football League's match review panel with a grade B offence.

It means that Larroyer will miss Rovers' Super League game at St Helens on Friday but will be free to play in the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup semi-final against Warrington at Headingley on Saturday week.

Hull KR coach Chris Chester is set to give new signing Dane Chisholm his debut at stand-off against Saints and switch Maurice Blair to Larroyer's second-row spot.

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Robinson swaps Hull KR for Halifax

Hull KR have released hooker or half back Connor Robinson to allow him to join Championship club Halifax with immediate effect.

The 20-year-old came through the Robins' academy ranks and made his Super League debut against London Broncos last season but has found first-team opportunities limited and, after recently playing for Halifax on dual-registration, has signed a one-year deal with them.

KR head coach James Chester said: "I've got no doubt that Connor has the potential to be a Super League player but he needs regular game time in order to develop and unfortunately we aren't in a position to be able to guarantee him that."

Hull KR sign Chisholm on loan

Hull Kingston Rovers have signed former French international half back Dane Chisholm from Canterbury Bulldogs on loan until the end of the season.

Credit: Press Association

The 25-year-old, who has also had spells Melbourne Storm, Wests Tigers and Manly Sea Eagles during his career, has become the latest player to join the Robins and will link-up with the club later this week.

With club captain Terry Campese sidelined for the rest of the campaign, Chisholm will provide cover for half backs Albert Kelly and Maurice Blair as well as adding further competition for places across the back division.

Chisholm, who has scored three tries in four international appearances for France after qualifying through his mother and grandparents, will be handed squad number 35.

Hull KR Head Coach Chris Chester is delighted with the signing:

Dane has been really impressive for Canterbury’s reserve grade side this year and he’s an exciting player to watch. As well has having plenty of experience at playing in the halves, he’s got blistering pace and he’s a great finisher too, so he gives us plenty of options.

– Head coach Chris Chester - Hull KR Head Coach

Hull clubs in controversial move to merge academies

Hull FC and Hull KR are to risk the wrath of their fans by casting aside their fierce rivalry to merge their youth development systems.

Credit: Press Association

In a controversial move, the Super League clubs are to combine their academies from 2016 at a new set-up based at Bishop Burton College, the home of Hull City's academy.

The clubs have yet to come up with a name for the under-16 and under-19s teams but have agreed they will play in the neutral colours of yellow and blue while progress to the first teams will be determined by a draft system.

The move has been welcomed by the Rugby Football League.

It is in no way, shape or form a pre-cursor to a full merger between the clubs. We have always been outspoken about the pride, passion, history and rivalry that exists between the two sides and that will never change.

– Hull KR chairman Neil Hudgell

We often shout about Hull as a hotbed of rugby league talent, a founding home for the sport, but the harsh reality is that the talent pool is smaller than it once was. The base cost of running successful academies of this nature is growing and the opportunity to spend quality and focused development time with our young athletes faces numerous challenges.

– Hull FC owner Adam Pearson
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