SPALDING RFC: Town seek a safety net

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JUDGEMENT day arrives for Spalding RFC this weekend as they bid to banish their Midlands One East relegation fears.

In-form Town welcome promotion-chasing Towcestrians to the Memorial Field on Saturday (3pm) in the first of a five-game run that will define their season.

All of Spalding’s final five fixtures are against top eight teams – including runaway leaders Derby – but a third victory in four games will earn them a vital cushion in the race for survival.

Having knocked off big-hitting duo Kettering and Paviors in recent weeks, club captain Harry Sharman is in bullish mood ahead of the crunch clash.

“We’ve got five games left and they’re all big ones,” admitted the talismanic skipper. “It’s another huge test for us against Towcestrians, but I’m still confident we can finish the season strongly and stay up.

“We’ve had great continuity in recent weeks and it’s shown in our performances.

“If we can win on Saturday it’s almost like we can look up rather than down. It’d be nice to keep the run going and it’d really take the pressure off the lads.

“Three of our last five games are at home and we back ourselves to beat anybody on home soil.”

That was the case last weekend, when previously second-placed Kettering were swept aside 16-10.

But two of the heroes of that victory, try scorer Jimmy Rowlands and fly-half Dave Hankinson, will be missing this week.

They’re joined on the sideline by Ryan Chappell and Fraser Walsh – meaning the winning formula of recent weeks will have to be broken.

Sharman is unfazed by the disruption though, and anticipates more of the same from his charges.

He added: “The lads showed incredible spirit last week, especially in the second half.

“We all stood up to be counted and it was a real backs to the wall job. Everyone put in 100 per cent and I have no doubt, even with the changes, it’ll be the same on Saturday.”