North Walsham aiming to end poor sequence at bogey ground

Josh Brown makes a break for North Walsham in their previous game, a narrow win over Eton Manor at S

Josh Brown makes a break for North Walsham in their previous game, a narrow win over Eton Manor at Scottow. Picture: HYWEL JONES - Credit: Archant

The penultimate road trip of the season for North Walsham sees them heading to Hertfordshire to play Letchworth Garden City.

It has been a less than happy hunting ground in the past for the Vikings, their four previous league meetings having all ended in defeat.

Tomorrow's hosts have had what can best be described as an average season, winning 10 and losing 12 of their games, with a setback losing five points for fielding an ineligible player in the early stages.

They had been on a winning run, including a big victory against higher placed Thurrock, but the run came to an end in the latest round of games as the lost by two points at Saffron Walden.

After their hard-fought 23-18 win against Eton Manor at Scottow the Vikings will have relished their week off. But there has been no let up on the training pitches, with coach James Brooks running some full-on sessions working on fitness and handling and leaving any contact until this week.

The week off should have allowed any injuries to heal so he should have a full roster of players to pick from.

Prop Johnny Masters pulled out of the Eton Manor game with a calf strain but should be good to go. Mark McCall stepped up to take his place so one could be unlucky. The back five could remain as was but flanker Ed Sampson is back from a break while Tom Coller's involvement might depend on the arrival or otherwise of his first born.

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The backs will probably be subject to no more than a shuffle. On the last competitive weekend Harry Downing was on the bench for the Vikings, with Mike Braans, Ethan Benney and Vilikesa Vurewa playing for the Raiders, so a change is not out of the question.

The fourth-placed Vikings have three more games to play after this weekend, at home to Thurrock and Old Priorians and away to Saffron Walden,

The Raiders, who had a competitive draw against league leaders Fakenham in their last game, head down the A11 to play their final league game at Wymondham seconds. In recent weeks the young squad has been strengthened by the inclusion of back rowers Chris Kent and Pena Sokia, which has helped the less experienced to raise their game.

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