Fylde RFC hope to see off Loughborough Students in kicking off 2022
Fylde RFC are ready to resume their season this weekend with a big opportunity to climb from fifth place in National Two North.
With the four teams above them scheduled for matches against each other on Saturday, there’s every incentive for Fylde to improve their away record when they visit Loughborough Students.
Fylde have a perfect home record after seven Woodlands games but only a 50 per cent win rate away.
Joint-head coach Chris Briers knows that Fylde’s determination to improve results on the road will be tested by the university side after the three-week mid-season break.
Fylde have lost nine of their 10 league games away to the Leicestershire club, winning only in the 2012/13 season.
Briers told The Gazette: “We’re good to go. It’s definitely a good test and a match we really need to be on the money for.
“It’s a place where you need to turn up for a competitive game.
“Maybe a few things didn’t go our way in the first half of the season and there are areas we want to improve, but we are all enthusiastic for the months ahead.”
Those four defeats on Fylde’s travels have left Briers with mixed feelings on the campaign so far but positive ahead of its second half.
He explained: “If you asked me if I was happy with where we are, I don’t know if I’d be happy with the league position.
“We’ve lost to three teams above us, who still have to come to our ground and we’ve been strong at home.
“We lost to some form teams, who were better than us on the day, but there have been games when we thought we really should have taken the points.
“We can see where games slipped away. We haven’t been at our best but, in some games, we could have got points.
“We’re the only team to have played all 15 games so far and hopefully that continues.
“The more we can get played the better because we don’t want to be one of those teams playing catch-up.”
Fylde have not seen a match lost to Covid cases so far and have taken plenty of precautions.
The squad spent time away from the club over Christmas and training resumed last Thursday, when heavy rain could not disrupt the session.
Briers added: “There was standing water around but we stayed off the main pitch and found half of a pitch suitable for a good session.
“We were conscious we hadn’t trained together for two weeks and it gave the lads something to focus on.”
Loughborough may only be two places below Fylde in the table but they are 20 points adrift, having lost their last three games.
With a huge pool of students at their disposal, Loughborough had fielded 75 players by the time of their last match on December 11, while Fylde had used just 29 by the same point.
Their captain is former Kirkham Grammar School pupil Teddy Leatherbarrow.
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