Norwich face testing trip to high-flying Romford and Gidea Park

Norwich secure a ruck during last week's win over South Woodham Ferrers at Beeston Hyrne Picture: AN

Norwich secure a ruck during last week's win over South Woodham Ferrers at Beeston Hyrne Picture: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE - Credit: Archant

Norwich travel to Romford and Gidea Park on Saturday for what is sure to be a very tough encounter.

The Essex side have only lost once this season in London Two North East, to second placed Saffron Walden, and have despatched three sides that have beaten Norwich, Southwold, Stowmarket and Ipswich.

Norwich will still be without injured captain Matt Selby plus Tom Moss who played well last week in the 30-9 win over South Woodham Ferrers but is unavailable.

The squad will be boosted, however, by the return of influential back Mike Lawton, who has been missing for several weeks, and injury returnees Pip Scott and Jack Walsh.

They will know that Romford are formidable opponents on home turf and nothing less than their best is likely to result in a victory.

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The league has been very competitive and highly unpredictable this year, with anyone capable of taking the spoils on any given day, and Norwich will be aiming to prove that last week's win was no flash in the pan, following on as it did from a run of four defeats in five.

'After a satisfying performance last week at home we must build on that and produce the same 80 minute game that got us the win and bonus points,' said Director of Rugby David Everitt.

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'Our defence was outstanding and the two debutant young wingers, Hugo Barratt and Charlie McConnell, had very encouraging games, working hard and getting involved in the game at every opportunity.'

He continued: 'Romford and Gidea Park are undefeated at home and will be a stern test for us. But if we can reproduce the same sort of performance as last week then we could cause an upset. We are also helped by several returnees to the squad, so head coach Lee Parry will have some hard selection decisions to make.'

Like Norwich, Southwold have also won three and lost four so far, but lie three points and a couple of places below them.

They ended a run of four straight defeats by beating Wanstead 52-10 on The Common last Saturday and will be aiming to build on that result when they travel to bottom side Basildon, who are still looking for their first points of the season.

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