Diss improvement needs to continue

NATIONAL 3LSE: Diss face another of the division's front-runners tomorrow when they welcome Ampthill to Mackenders.

Following last weekend's defeat to second-placed Dorking and the previous Saturday's loss to leaders Hertford, it is another tough assignment for the Blues.

Last season the visitors won the Midland Division before moving to the London Division this year.

Despite Diss' defeat at Dorking, the coaching staff were very pleased with the effort put in by all the players, saying that it was probably the best performance of the year, and especially by the newer members of the squad.

The team changes again this week as several players return, with both the pack and back line being strengthened.

Ampthill traditionally play a forwards' game similar to Diss, so the battle is set to be won and lost up front.

The Saracens do not have a fixture this week, but the thirds are at home to North Walsham III while the fourths host Crusader Medics.

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Having been comprehensively beaten by top side Hertford last week North Walsham could have hoped for something a bit easier than the fixture makers have handed out as, for the second week in succession, they face unbeaten, high-flying opposition in the shape of Dorking.

The Surrey side, having finished seventh in their debut season in the division last year, have got off to a flyer, winning and gaining a bonus point in each of their five games to date.

They have a sprinkling of overseas players in their squad and their back division has done the bulk of the scoring, with wing Mike Terelak touching down eight times.

The Walsham players will not need reminding that they have shipped far too many points so far and that they need to tighten their defence so that even if they do not get the win then they get a losing or four try bonus point, which could be vital come the end of the season.

Nick Greenhall will welcome back Shaun Woodhouse to the front row, with James Lusted providing cover in the absence of Ben Campbell and Dom Roberts.

Grant Furlong, called away on exercises in Wales last week, is available and competing for a place in the second row.

Iain Young, fully recovered from a thigh strain, could step into the outside half role, with Jonny Wyatt moving to full back.

The unavailability of centre Adie Ball could provide the opportunity for Greenhall to blood youngster Jack Hoyles, who has impressed in training.

With Dorking unable to fulfil the second team fixture the Raiders are currently in discussion to find a replacement fixture.