West can pass title test

Action from the Boys Brigade versus Hartlepool RNLI(blue shirts) fundraiser at the Od Friarage ground.
Action from the Boys Brigade versus Hartlepool RNLI(blue shirts) fundraiser at the Od Friarage ground.

WEST Hartlepool’s winning mindset will carry them over the North One East championship finishing line.

That was the confident prediction today from wounded leader Jonny Boatman on the eve of their final home match of the season.

West have the luxury of having two bites of the league title cherry.

Even if they were to slip up tomorrow against Cleckheaton, they would still be able to clinch the North One East crown at relegation favourites Northern on Easter Saturday.

But West have won 16 in a row since their controversial last-gasp Halloween defeat at Percy Park and Boatman is expecting tomorrow’s Brinkburn date with Cleckheaton to be a case of sweet 17 (kick-off 3pm).

Cleckheaton, relegated with West 12 months ago from National Three (North) will be no pushover – the West Yorkshire outfit actually won at Catcote Road near the end of last season, not that it saved them from the drop.

It would be a major shock if they repeated that victory tomorrow.

While the Tykes are third in the table, they are a whopping 27 points behind the leaders and have lost seven times, compared to just two defeats for West.

And Boatman says his team’s knack of winning every Saturday will stand them in good stead even if Clecky threaten their 100 per cent home run.

“It would be absolutely mint if we could clinch the title at home,” said the 28-year-old flanker.

“Our consistency has been they key to our success.

“There have been some games when we’ve not played as well as we could, but we have still got the result.

“We’ve got that great mindset of being winners.”

SEE Friday’s Mail for full story