Horden favourites for Durham Northumberland One rugby title

LEADER OF THE PACK: Michael Thubron
LEADER OF THE PACK: Michael Thubron

WILL it be a case of ‘it will be all right on the night’ for Horden?

Skipper Michael Thubron hopes so as Horden get their Durham Northumberland One promotion campaign under way tomorrow at Consett.

Winning has become a habit for Glenn Bowman’s team in 2013 when a run of 13 victories in a row catapulted them to third place in the final table.

It was an amazing turnaround for the colliery side who spent the first third of the league programme in the relegation zone.

They start now as title favourites but they also begin with their air of invincibility damaged by a torrid pre-season when they conceded over a century of points in defeats at Billingham and West Hartlepool.

Thubron though believes confidence has not been affected and insists Horden are “looking forward to the season”.

“We’ve played against two very good sides, one from the national leagues and the other who will soon be back there,” he told SportMail.

“We are not too disheartened.

“We’ve got to look at those games as a learning curve and put right things which went wrong.

“We are looking forward to the season. Things are looking all right, we’ve got the same squad who finished third last season and a few young lads coming through into the senior squad.”

Those defeats could actually work in Horden’s favour, sharpening their focus for the job ahead.

And Thubron says that success will not be handed to them on a plate and their favourite tag makes them a side there to be shot at.

“We can’t live off that reputation [from last season],” he said.

“Sides we are coming up against now will want to beat us even more.

“I want to see us go to COnsett and make a statement.”

Despite the Durham Senior Cup mauling at National Three North outfit Billingham and a six-try reverse at West, Horden will start favourites at Consett tomorrow.

The Belle Vue club are in confident mood themselves, having beaten Rovers to lift the Durham Intermediate Cup in the final match of last season and then started the defence of their trophy by running in a number of tries againsat Hartlepool last month.

Horden should cope tomorrow without hooker Richie Thirkell, who has been suspended after being sent off at West.

The side are also minus Dan Palmer who faces a long spell on the sidelines after being injured in Durham’s County Championship programme at the end of last season.