Fylde RFC prepare for leaders’ visit

Fylde hope Ben Vernon will return from concussion tomorrow
Fylde hope Ben Vernon will return from concussion tomorrow

Fylde RFC head coach Warren Spragg is ready to meet a familiar foe tomorrow as they seek a return to winning ways.

Having lost at Hinckley last time out, Fylde welcome National Two North leaders Hull Ionians to the Woodlands.

Spragg’s players go into the game sitting seventh in the table with four wins and as many defeats from eight games.

Their visitors, in contrast, sit top with seven wins and a defeat putting them two points ahead of Hinckley.

“We have played them a lot in recent years and we know what to expect,” Spragg said of tomorrow’s opponents.

“They have quality across the pitch and a good set of forwards.

“Lewis Minikin, their goal kicker, is someone who I’m sure had offers from National One and the Championship and they also have threats on the wing with players like Sam Wilson.

“We know what threats they will bring so we have to perform well across the pitch if we want to win.”

Spragg will be forced into changes tomorrow with Henry Hadfield suspended following his red card for foul play at Hinckley.

Dave Fairbrother will also be missing but there could be better news elsewhere.

“Hopefully Ben Vernon will have recovered from his concussion and will be cleared to play,” Spragg said.

“It takes three weeks when a player has concussion for them to be able to return but Ben’s situation seems to be going fine.

“Hadfield’s absence means it brings an opportunity for someone else to impress and stake their claim.”

Hadfield’s dismissal for an apparent stamp means he is now banned for a week following a disciplinary hearing.

The Fylde coach, consequently wants his players to use it as a learning curve in future.

Spragg said: “There were fisticuffs afterwards and there was no video because that corrupted, so we haven’t had the benefit of hindsight.

“However, once the game was stopped for a while and the officials spoke, I think our lads lost concentration.

“When you lose a player to a red card, you have to adjust your attack and defence and we just didn’t do it quickly enough after that because they scored straight away.”