Fylde RFC look for a return to winning ways
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Having grown used to competing for National Two North’s one promotion place in recent seasons, Fylde’s primary objective now is beating bottom club Huddersfield at the Woodlands on Saturday to halt their longest losing run since rejoining this division in 2018.
Joint-head coach Loney has refused to use a lengthy injury list to explain the season’s disappointing start and insists Fylde are ready to resume winning ways.
He told The Gazette: “You can’t hide behind much when you keep on losing but we aren’t, all of a sudden, a bottom-of-the-table team.
“The disappointment does go right through the club and we have become so used to competing at the top that this is a shock to some.
“It’s a combination of not getting the performances right and missing out in a number of tight games.
“If we do get everything right we believe we have the players to get results.
“There is no feeling of panic stations and, if we improve on a few fundamentals, the results will follow.”
Loney can take encouragement from his side’s display at unbeaten leaders Leeds Tykes in their last outing a fortnight ago – and from their desire to train last week ahead of a blank weekend.
He explained: “We trained on the Tuesday to keep things moving and the squad were fully behind that.
“There was a good feeling and the universal response was that they wanted to do a session.
“We were happy with parts of the performance against an unbeaten Leeds team.
“It was really nip and tuck early on and we had plenty of pressure but lost momentum before half-time.
“We came strong again in the second half but we don’t want to be satisfied with being plucky losers.
“We want to turn performances into points and the focus is on results.”
The immediate goal is to climb back into the top half of the table with victory over a Huddersfield side which has just one win under their belt so far.
“The big thing is to build on the last performance and improve in the areas where we need to be better,” Loney said.
“We want to get the performance and the result right on Saturday and go into the game with minds sharpened, but we have to prepare properly and take nothing for granted.
“We do have bodies coming back but I’m a big believer in controlling what you can control.
“We have the Sale Academy lads now to bolster us and we are getting closer to full strength, which will give us more options.
“We believe the team we put out on Saturday will be good enough to win.”
The league programme was put on hold last weekend, enabling everyone to enjoy a World Cup final which Loney feels produced worthy winners.
“You can’t argue against South Africa’s success over a number of years,” he said.
“It's remarkable what they have done to be back-to-back winners and they had to come through some tight games this time.
“I was in South Africa in the summer for a school rugby tour and I know what the game means over there.”