Walsham warm up for return with flat-out training sessions

James Knight in full flight during North Walsham's previous game, a 10-8 home win over Chingford. P

James Knight in full flight during North Walsham's previous game, a 10-8 home win over Chingford. Picture: HYWEL JONES - Credit: Archant

A week off following the physical encounter against Chingford should set North Walsham up nicely for their next London One North game, which involves a trip to Ruislip.

Despite there being no game last weekend James Brooks kept the players focussed with two flat-out training sessions, and a video analysis of the Chingford game.

It was interesting that having been beaten heavily at Chingford early in the season and then reversing the result in the rematch with a hard-fought 10-8 success the Vikings find a similar situation this week.

When Ruislip came to Scottow back in October they had suffered defeat in each of their first six games and were clearly demoralised, going down 61-0 as the Vikings ran in nine tries.

The defeat was followed by a run of three successes to lift them out of the relegation zone but since then they have been inconsistent, winning just three from eight to sit just below mid-table.

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Walsham coach James Brooks should have plenty of options when it comes to selection for the backs but might not have the same luxury when it comes to the forwards. With Mark McCall out with a foot injury the front row of Downing, Browes and Weber is likely to continue but lock Tom Coller will miss this one with work commitments, meaning changes to the back five.

The most likely option is for skipper Ryan Oakes to move forward to replace Coller, with Will Hodgson switching from centre to No8. If this happens then Mike Hendry will most likely take the 13 shirt, with either Mike Braans or Jake Duffield at scrum-half.

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Walsham go into the match standing fourth in the table with 12 wins and six defeats to their name – including four victories in their last five fixtures. They are only five points adrift of third-placed Chingford, with all sides now having played the same number of games.

The Raiders, who only just fell short against Diss seconds in their previous fixture, also had a week off and resume at Broadland Great Yarmouth.

For the Diss game they called up four youth players to make their senior debuts and depending on their Sunday holiday commitments some or all could figure in the squad.

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