Form vow by Nel­son

Rossendale Free Press - - Sport -

ROSSENDALE RUFC head coach Mark Nel­son says his side are de­ter­mined to keep their im­pres­sive run of form go­ing un­til the end of the sea­son – even if they have little to play for.

Rossendale have lost just twice since the be­gin­ning of Novem­ber, but were ham­pered by a slow start to the cam­paign and a se­ries of post­pone­ments due to bad weather.

The club now sit fifth in the North­ern Pre­mier, with little chance of ris­ing any higher, but Nel­son says that the team are still keen to fin­ish the sea­son on a strong note.

“This year has been so stop-start, but we had a team meet­ing and all the lads bought into the fact that we weren’t go­ing to peter out and just see the sea­son out and write it off,” he said. “You al­ways want your aim to be push­ing. We didn’t start the sea­son well this year.

“We lost away at Hull in the first game of the sea­son, and then we lost against Ken­dal at home, and we stut­tered around.

“We got a few wins, we got a cou­ple of can­celled games be­fore Christ­mas, which is never heard of re­ally, and that sort of took our mo­men­tum away.

“We want to make a state­ment. Since Christ­mas, we’ve only lost to Har­ro­gate and Pre­ston so we want to keep that record. If there was a league ta­ble of form since Christ­mas, I think we’d be third.”

In­deed, Nel­son feels that the only dis­ap­point­ment in Rossendale’s sea- son has been their re­sults against the big­ger sides in the di­vi­sion.

“Whilst we’ve done very well against ev­ery­body else, it’s the top teams that we haven’t re­ally done our­selves jus­tice against,” he said.

“That’s been the most frus­trat­ing thing of this sea­son, so we need to look at that for next year.”

Rossendale’s last two re­sults have been suc­ces­sive vic­to­ries over Billingham that saw them leapfrog the North East­ern side in the ta­ble, and Nel­son says that his side’s pur­ple patch has led to a spike in con­fi­dence for their re­main­ing fix­tures: “I was talk­ing to the cap­tain Do­minic Moon and he was say­ing that the team spirit is very good.

“There’s a real pos­i­tiv­ity within the squad.

“Ev­ery­body is buy­ing into what we’re do­ing and I think that the play­ers want to fin­ish on a high to lead into the sum­mer break. Then we look at pre­sea­son, hope­fully have a good pre-sea­son, and have an­other tilt at the top end of the league next year.”

Chris Far­row

Rossendale coach Mark Nel­son

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