Determined coach Gareth Lewis is challenging Huddersfield RU to start a climb up the National II North table tomorrow by beating Luctonians at Lockwood Park.
Lewis is not among the matchday squad himself following a flu-type bug, but he welcomes back hooker Ben Morrell to the bench after a year out – he has undergone a knee reconstruction after cruciate ligament damage – and is implementing a reshuffle among the backs.
After successive defeats to Hull Ionians and Harrogate, Lewis is in no mood to slip up again.
“It’s a massive game with us in 13th place and Luctonians just one place below,” he said.
“That being said, we are still looking up the table and I don’t care who the other sides are playing, we are looking at the teams above us.
“I am challenging my side to get up the ladder. We want to go past Birmingham and it’s a case of setting ourselves challenges – then the results will look after themselves.”
Lewis is keen for Huddersfield to put down a marker early in the game and take the initiative against a Herefordshire side who are fresh from beating Stourbridge.
“We have been dropping off too many tackles, so we have been doing a little bit of work on our defensive play, both individually and in team organisation,” he said.
“There was a very costly 10-minute spell in our last match against Harrogate which effectively put us out of it when we could quite easily have won, so we want to make sure that doesn’t happen again.
“And there are one or two other specifics which myself and the coaching staff have picked up on which we want to see put right.
“Our training has gone well and we’ve got one more session left in preparation, so I think we will be ready to go come kick-off and I want to see our work put into practice.”
Huddersfield: Mitchell, Hodgson, Owen, Martin, Hall, Bell, Hinchliffe, Battye, Walker (H), Sanderson, Thompson, Rhodes, Malthouse, Hoyle, Sharpe. Subs: Morrell, Jeffrey, Thornton, Clarke, Purcell.