The All Golds will be looking to make it back-to-back wins on Sunday when they host Oxford.
Kick-off 3pm, Prince of Wales Stadium, Cheltenham.
The Golden Fern dug deep last weekend to fight back from 16-8 down at Hemel to eventually win 32-20, the two points moving them up to tenth in League 1, level on points with eighth placed Workington. With just four games to go before the top eight breakaway from the bottom eight, Sunday could be a pivotal game in the race for the play-offs.
All Golds head coach Lee Greenwood was full of praise for his young side after last Sunday’s crucial win at Hemel but says they’ll need to be better against an Oxford side who are just two points below his team. He said: “We showed a fair amount of character at Hemel. We went in at half-time 16-8 down but we hadn’t done a lot wrong. In the second half we got on top of them and only conceded four points in the whole half. It was a big win because Hemel are much improved from earlier in the season.
“Oxford have done really well this season. A bit like ourselves they’ve turned over a couple of established northern clubs so we know we’ll have to be at our best to get the two points. If previous seasons are anything to go by it looks like being a close game.
“We’re back at home and we’re looking forward to it. We’ve put in a couple of disappointing performances on our own pitch in recent weeks and we want to get back to our early season home form which saw us beat Keighley and Crusaders.”
Welsh international Lewis Reece has recovered from the knee injury which saw him miss out at Hemel and could be in line to make his 50th appearance for the All Golds. Steven Nield is the only absentee from the squad that travelled to Hemel.
Oxford sit two points and two places behind the All Golds in thirteenth. They were comprehensively beaten by the fast improving Newcastle Thunder last weekend but they can take confidence from victories against York and Hunslet earlier in the campaign.
With both teams desperate for the win, it promises to be a fascinating clash.