ANOTHER weather-induced blank Saturday for Matlock RFC 1sts has left the side frustrated but still fully focussed on the tough run of games ahead of them.
Coach Alan Johnson believes his side will need little in the way of motivation going into Saturday’s home tie with Loughborough, as the reverse fixture back in October arguably marked the low point of Matlock’s Midlands One East season.
He explained: “Yes, it was a little frustrating to have Saturday’s game at home to Kettering called off, but certainly not unexpected.
“And we now go into Saturday’s game with virtually a full-strength squad to choose from. Alex Powell was fit to play to play Kettering and this week Chris Young believes he’ll be ready to play after his wrist operation, so that’s two of our most influential backs who are back in the frame.
“Chris has missed the last four or five games but he’s still the second highest points scorer in the league this season and I think it was only last weekend that he was overhauled from top spot, so you can how influential a player he is.
“We did some training on Saturday even though the game was off and the focus is good for this next match. As I have said before, the club has spent money on the pitch and that has paid off this season so far, so we think it should be OK for the weekend as the snow starts to go.
“There were a few issues at the game at Loughborough earlier in the season. There were one or two comments on the way there about how ‘we never get anything at Loughborough’ and that the pitch was strange etc, which I thought were odd things to say before a game, and it proved to be a bad afternoon.
“Not much went right, we failed to get the ref onside, which is unusual for us because we pride ourselves on our discipline, but one or two were ill-disciplined.
“Loughborough played well and had some big lads who caused us problems but we didn’t help ourselves.
“There were one or two changes after that and we had a team meeting to make sure that that sort of display would never happen again, and it hasn’t.
“It was the low point of the season and there are not too many happy memories of that day. But the other occasion where we had an afternoon to forget was at Peterborough and we successfully put that right in our last game so we look to do something similar on Saturday. The attitude is righ so we are looking forward to it.”
The game at Cromford Meadows kicks off at 2.15pm.