Holt must end habit of starting slowly

Holt travel to South Woodham Ferrers looking for their first away win of the season in London 2NE, having lost all three so far.

Holt's coaches Penny Chapman and Ed Steed know it won't be easy for their side to break their duck in Essex against a side currently fifth in the league, with four victories from six, including wins over Braintree, Basildon and Holt's conquerors last week Chelmsford as well as an 29-10 away victory over Norwich last time out.

As such Chapman and Steed will have stressed to their players how important it is to stop giving sides a head start.

'It will be hard enough to secure the win on Saturday, against a good side, who are playing with lots of confidence,' said Chapman. 'So we certainly can't afford to make it any more difficult by letting them get away from us. We've done this in our last two away games, leaving ourselves an uphill task and whilst we did get back into these matches in the latter stages by then we'd left ourselves too much to do.'

This was also the case in last Saturday's home defeat, although ultimately Chelmsford were well worth their 24 -34 victory, as they raced away with the game before Holt came back into it. Holt appeared to struggle at times with their opposition's physicality, something not normally associated with the side.

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'We let ourselves be out-muscled at times in the first half and didn't appear to know how to deal with this and certainly weren't able match it,' said Steed. 'Whilst we got the reaction we demanded from the players at half-time we need to react like this from the start of every game.'

Holt can take some positives from the game, including individual performances of some of their players. Captain Bruce Van Poortvliet, Woodfordes Man of the Match, Ashley Woods, and young winger John Phoenix all gaVe the coaching duo and their squad something to build on in the coming weeks.

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Holt will be waiting to see how a couple of players respond to treatment but with Richard Justice and John Phoenix among a number of squad players who are unavailable a change in line-up for both Holt's 1st and 2nd teams is inevitable.

n Eastern Counties One leaders West Norfolk will be looking to bounce back from their first defeat of the season tomorrow when they play host to mid-table Woodbridge.

Crusaders travel to Harwich and Dovercourt, the side just below them in the table, looking to build on a 17-7 win over Broadland-Great Yarmouth, who are at home to Newmarket.

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