Swain extends
contract at Hull

Hull have offered a one-year contract extension to influential hooker and captain Richard Swain.

Swain?s contract runs out at the end of the new season but the Powergen Challenge Cup winners have already opened talks with the former New Zealand international about extending his stay at the KC Stadium to the end of 2007.

The 30-year-old Swain has made a big impact since joining the club from Australian outfit Melbourne Storm in 2004.

?Getting Richard on board would be a real bonus for us and hopefully we can tie something up in the near future,? chief executive David Plummer told the Hull Daily Mail.

Plummer also revealed the club were close to finalising a new deal with 29-year-old Australian back-row forward Shayne McMenemy, whose current deal runs out at the end of this year.

Both Swain and McMenemy will sit out Sunday?s Clive Sullivan Memorial Trophy clash with Hull Kingston Rovers at the KC Stadium but Hull?s Great Britain prop Jamie Thackray will play.

Thackray was not due to return to training until Wednesday after his Tri-Nations commitments but came back three weeks early in order to play in his first Humberside derby.

Thackray, along with Hull?s two close-season signings Lee Radford and Sid Domic, have been included in coach Jon Kear?s 20-man squad.

Front row pair Paul King and Garreth Carvell are sidelined after wrist operations but hope to be fit for the start of the engage Super League season on February 10.

Rovers give a debut to former Leeds half-back Scott Murrell and, in the absence of skipper James Webster, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, will be led by another new signing, ex-London Broncos prop Francis Stephenson.

The clubs have already sold more than 9,000 tickets for the pre-season friendly.

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Thanks to www.superleague.co.uk for this news.