Alnwick Preview

By Dave Picken - November 11 2016
Alnwick Preview Funny how the fixture list can work out. All of a sudden we find ourselves in the middle of a run of away games against the three sides immediately below us in the table with Alnwick next up this weekend ...

Fortunately, there is an eight point cushion over Penrith, nine over the Northumbrians and ten over Pocklington who we visit in a fortnight. As a result we go into the games with the pressure on the hosts to try to close the gap. They will all be aware that they have to visit Brinkburn in 2017.

The run got off to a good start when a much changed side drew at Penrith - a game where we finished the stronger.

And once again there will be enforced changes for the trip up the A1 with Coatesy on international duty at Twickers, and last week's Man of the Match John Bunter having to work. Joe Willis is also unavailable after surviving his semi-garrotting last week.

Liam Checksfield almost made the return, however a fitness test on his calf injury at his Falcons' training session last night ruled him out. The other injury victim is Michael Hogan who has been on good form so far - he's damaged a shoulder and could be out for a couple of weeks.

The good news (for the West coaches) is that the Myers boys should have been in Bangkok with a Hartlepool  Select 7's team this weekend. However, the nation is in a long period of mourning following the death of their King so the tournament has been cancelled.

Aaron will make only his second start of the season in the back row alongside Sam Miller and Lee Maddison, while Eldon, unusually quiet against City last week, gets another chance to restore his "land legs" alongside Peter Youll.

Rob Thorn takes over from young Joe, while Tim Blades is fit again and comes into the front row alongside Andrew Rollins and Ross Wood. With Aaron available skipper Danny Boatman will partner Joe Rafferty in the second row.

Games between the two sides are normally close and tend to go with the home team. The hosts have won all five of their games at Greensfield Road, although local rivals Morpeth (next up for us at home) ran them very close a fortnight ago  - Alnwick just sneaking the 9-8 win with a last ditch penalty from dangerous full back James Bird.

Last week they lost 22-20 at Pocklington - another side going very well at home.

West: Zac Southern, Rob Thorn, Eldon Myers, Peter Youll,, Will Hilditch, Gavin Painter, Ryan Painter,  Tim Blades, Andrew Rollins, Ross Wood,  Joe Rafferty, Dan Boatman (captain), Aaron Myers, Lee Maddison, Sam Miller.

Changes: Greg Edwards, Alex Barker, Jay Corbett.

Alnwick Preview
Official West Hartlepool RFC (IP Logged)
11/11/2016 09:45
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Re: Alnwick Preview
Denny Dixon (IP Logged)
11/11/2016 10:11
Will be a real test for the team and will need full blooded effort, commitment and endeavour and a true WEST spirit to ensure we come out on top and at the very least ensure they don't get bonus point and we do!! Let's be determined however to make the journey up the A1 a successful one!!Best of luck WEST.

Re: Alnwick Preview
Elmo Wilko (IP Logged)
11/11/2016 10:46
Great to see Tim Blades in the starting line-up. Shame his brother-in-law (technically if not biblically) our very own Scott of the Bar, is having a day off, meaning Elmo is looking after things back at the club and can't travel with the alicadoos to Alnwick or the Vets side to Novos. I was great last time away at Novos were as tour gimp I spent a massive £10 all day.

I am sure to have a day with Mouldy etc on the larrup soon!

Re: Alnwick Preview
davepicken (IP Logged)
11/11/2016 11:06
Don't worry Elmo we will all be back at some stage to make sure you celebrate your Birthday properly .....

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/11/2016 11:08 by davepicken.

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