ROVERS old boy Joe Cator hopes he’s in for a warm reception when running out in front of Hull KR’s passionate East Stand fans for Leigh’s Coral Challenge Cup fifth round tie tonight, Thursday, writes Trevor Baxter.

But he’s ready to incur Humberside wrath by helping Centurions claim the scalp of their Betfred Super League hosts.

Cator made his first-team debut for the Robins in 2016 but played only five times last year, supplemented by loan spells at Coventry and Newcastle.

The 20-year-old utility forward has become a regular since crossing the Pennines and is loving life after taking up a new job as a sports teacher.

“Leigh is my home and new family now, “explained the one-time Skirlaugh Bulls amateur who will line-up alongside another former Robin, centre Iain Thornley.

“I am not sure,” he smiled when asked how Rovers’ supporters would mark his return to KCOM Craven Park. “ I hope it’s a good one.

“However, if I score the winning try in the last minute, I think I know how they will react.

“I was buzzing when the draw was made and it will be great to see some old faces.

“I still have mates there and keep in touch with a few of the lads. But when you get on the field you are not mates for 80 minutes.

“And I am more focused on trying to get the result for Leigh and to make sure we play well as a team.”

Cator has already made 10 appearances for Leigh this season including last Sunday’s 46-30 Championship win over Barrow.

He started employment as a trainee civil engineer but recently switched as he felt the long hours were impacting on his rugby league.

“I’m loving life at the minute,” agreed the 20-year-old, equally at home at hooker or in the back row.

“I’ve got the balance right since starting my new job. I’m giving myself the best opportunity I can to make sure I can give my all for Leigh.”

Rovers haven’t played since beating Leeds Rhinos 45-26 to register a fourth Super League win of the year.

“Some of us will have worked in the morning and then had to shoot straight to catch the coach,” added Cator.

“We won’t be getting home until 12.30 or 1am and then we will be back in work on Friday. But we are not going to use that as an excuse because we know when we turn it on we are a very good team.”

Rovers head coach Tim Sheens expects to be without Joel Tomkins (hamstring), Will Oakes (ribs) and Weller Hauraki (shoulder) for Leigh’s visit.

“We will not take any risks,” said Sheens. “If they are fit, they play.”