Rochdale set fair for revenge quest
ROCHDALE 1st XV will look to extend their winning run today when they take on Winnington Park.
Last week’s comprehensive victory over Sefton helps them to set up a return match this weekend at Winnington.
‘Park beat Dale at Moorgate early in the season by a 0-3 scoreline and Dale will certainly be out to avenge that result.
To be realistic, Dale need to win all their remaining games to have a chance of promotion this year.
The Dale front row is possibly the youngest for a good few years. Ben Coulter has had an outstanding season so far and he is joined by the ever improving Josh Grundy.
Besides the youth, the pack has a measure of experience that is making good progress at set pieces and making plenty of ball available for the eager forwards.
Dominic Macklin and Adam Derbyshire both made telling contributions last week and both are capable forwards with vision and a good turn of speed.
The welcome return of Alex Isherwood is a boost and the excellent Jack Green both provide replacement cover this week.
Coach Danny Collins has no problems in using the full 18 players and so everyone is sure of gametime.
B Coulter, J Bradley, J Grundy, S Needham, T Helliwell, A Foster, B Nonleh, R Hartley, T Townsend, J Duffy, B Henry, O Coldman, D Macklin, A Derbyshire, J Flitcroft, T Callaghan, A Isherwood, J Green.
The second team are at home as they face Wirral.
Rob Wadsworth makes a return to rugby after a long layoff through injury – Dale welcome back Rob as he comes into the second row today.
Wirral are a tough outfit and a hard game is on the cards.
Competition for places is hotting up with the return of players from injury and no fewer than seven of this second XV have had 1st team experience recently.
H Hill, M Parry, P Swinden, R Wadsworth, G Hornby, K Jackson, H Hayes, C Hodgkinson, A Gilbert, R Clegg, K Humphries, M Robinson, A Redfern, J Holt, M Buckley, D Flynn, J Woolfenden, D Conner.
The Thirds offer 20 players in their matchday squad this weekend for the home game against Bolton.
Everyone is eager to start the new year on a positive not and a keenly contested match is expected today.
A Riley, C Nield, A Kilkenny, G Smith, A Beresford, A Pope, D Bamford, D Smith, R Gullen, C Rawlinson, H Kalau, S Holton, E Pope, B Mullins, J Finnegan, S Mahmood, L Morton, D Badham, A Mullins, A Duffy.
●●Ben Coulter has been in outstanding form for Rochdale so far this season