The All Golds travel to bottom of the table Hemel Stags on Sunday knowing anything but a win will likely put an end to their hopes of securing a place inside the top eight play-offs.
After two heavy losses to Newcastle and Whitehaven Lee Greenwood’s side will be looking for a much improved performance against the Stags, who have lost all ten of their league games this season. Speaking after training on Thursday night the All Golds head coach said he wants to see his side return to the kind of form which saw them claim impressive wins last month against North Wales Crusaders and Coventry Bears. He said: “Obviously the last couple of games haven’t been great. I don’t think it stems from a lack of effort, we’ve just come up against two very strong teams. Hemel aren’t nowhere near as good as Newcastle or Whitehaven but they are improving and could have easily won their last two games. We know they’ll see this as a game they can win, so its up to us to show the right attitude and get the job done.
“We’ve had some good wins at Hemel in the last few seasons, hopefully we can get another on Sunday. As disappointing as the last two games have been we’ve shown in spells how good we can be. If the players show the right attitude and commitment I’m sure we can get the job done. I don’t care how we do it, the result is all that matters, I’d take a one point victory if you offered it me now.”
James Walter and Phil Cowburn are likely to feature on Sunday after recovering from concussion and shoulder injuries respectively. Ben Stead will miss out against his former team but another ex-Stags player – Malikhi Lloyd-Jones – is likely to play. Richard Jones, who re-joined the club this week, could also be involved after he was named in the 19 man squad.
The Stags used to be the All Golds’ bogey side but if recent results are anything to go by the All Golds will fancy themselves on Sunday. Earlier this season the Golden Fern coasted to a 48-12 win at Hemel and last summer they ran in a club record score of 74-18 as they completed the double over Troy Perkins’ side.
Hemel have endured a disastrous 2017 season and have been rooted to the foot of the table since the opening day. However, they have improved in recent games and perhaps should have won their last two, against Crusaders and Coventry.
Get Lee Greenwood’s thoughts on the game here: