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Dave Irish is urging his Ludlow Rugby Club players ‘to get physical’
6:02am Friday 3rd January 2014 in Sport
COACH Dave Irish is urging his Ludlow Rugby Club players ‘to get physical’.
Irish believes Old Saltleians will bring a robust game-plan to Saturdays’ match at The Linney.
He thinks Old Salts pose a ‘serious challenge’ to Ludlow’s play-off aspirations.
Fourth-placed Ludlow defeated Old Salts 31-17 in Midlands Two West (North) in October.
But the Warwickshire outfit have already won at The Linney this term – an 11-9 North Midlands Shield success in September.
“It's very important for us to maintain our record against the sides below us in the league if we wish to kick on and be in contention for play offs,” said Irish.
“Old Salts pose a serious challenge to us.
“They beat us at home in the cup in the first game of the season in the cup and so will have no fear coming to The Linney.
“We must meet them physically in this game.
“If we can do this, I am confident we would be good enough to win.
“They are a very physical side.
“They live on the edge of the laws and are quite fit. However, as we showed at their place, if we have quick rucks and move the ball to our backs we can negate their forwards.
“We have to emphasise to them, in the early exchanges, hat we are more than a match for them physically.”
Old Saltleians are sixth in the division after five wins and six losses.
Irish is hoping to have Theo Hodnett, Joe Doyle, Tim Breakwell and Mike Jones back in contention for selection.
Irish said: “The players who have come in have played very well. It will be a luxury to pick from a full-strength squad and have some more tactical options from the bench.”
Meanwhile, promotion-chasing Clee Hill host local rivals Tenbury this Saturday in Midlands Four West (North) and Cleobury Mortimer entertain struggling St Leonards.
Fifth-placed Bishops Castle start life with without Matt Isley as they travel to Bromyard .
"Matt Isley has gone back to South Africa,” said Castle’s Pete Bevan, who skippers Castle on the pitch.
“He's gone to university on a three-year course and it will be a big loss for us.
"He has been a big part of the club for the past 12 months and we wish him well."