RUGBY PREVIEW: Horden v Sheffield


INJURIES continue to blight Horden who face another promotion hopeful tomorrow when Sheffield visit Welfare Park.

A step up in league would have been hard enough without the raft of changes each week but the constant loss of players is frustrating for the colliery side.

Carl Oliver is out with a hamstring injury sustained in last week’s warm-up at Percy Park.

He is replaced in squad by Michael Turner who impressed in the second team last Saturday.

Andrew Docherty comes into the squad after recovering from an ankle injury.

Carl Brown and Ross Brymer are retained after good performances last week.

“Ross did really well,” said head coach Glenn Bowman. “He was a threat with ball in hand and showed good pace when he scored in the corner.

“He should be pleased with his first game at this level.

“Browny came off the bench at Percy Park and made an impact. His effort and tackle count were right up there.”

Despite four defeats out of four in North One East, Bowman reports that morale has not been damaged.

“We’ve had a decent week at training, the lads have worked hard,” he told SportMail.

“We know where we sit at the moment and we know what we need to do to improve on this.

“Hopefully we can make a start on Saturday.

“Despite the losses everyone is positive, the craic has been good at training.

“Hopefully this will help us get some points on the board on Saturday.”

Sheffield, beaten by an injury-time penalty at West on the opening weekend of the programme have come back well with back-to-back wins.

But Horden will take encouragement from the fact West’s forwards gave trhem a hard time and they will look to turn on theior own power at the Welfare.

“No doubt Sheffield will looking at our league position and expecting a win,” added Bowman.

“They’ll be another big test but the lads have got to continue to believe in themselves.

“As usual, Porky [captain Paul James] led from the front last week and hopefully a few more will follow in his footsteps.

Horden (from): D Heckles, R Brymer, A White, A Docherty, L Watson, M Turner, D Bains, T Pelser, M Thompson, C Wood, G Malcolm, J Hudson, P Malcolm, P Armstrong, C Brown, C Purvis, D Greener, P James (capt)