2nd XV away at Sale FC

Date: 23 January 2015

The second team have begun 2015 in fine form, securing a convincing away victory at Caldy and then dominating champions Sedgley Tigers at Lightfoot Green last weekend.

As a result they find themselves in second place with a game in hand and superior points difference in Conference A of the Bateman Premier League. However there is no place for complacency, arrogance or laurel resting amongst Young’s squad as just one defeat can have a significant impact upon the destination of the championship.

Training was disrupted on Tuesday due to the arctic conditions but a good session was held on Thursday and the players were briefed by Hoppers legend Neil Ashton. The former club skipper epitomises the values and ethos that Coach John Young is striving to instil in what is an extremely promising group of players.

This weekend they travel down the M60 to face Sale FC at Heywood Road. A competitive fixture is expected against a side who, since promotion a couple of seasons ago, have acquitted themselves well in the Premier League. Hoppers have generally come out on top in games between the two sides with the exception of one particularly frustrating encounter last season when Young’s men were narrowly defeated at a wet and extremely windy Carrington. Young’s men are unbeaten away from home this season and are well prepared as they look to continue the level of performance they showed last time out.

As is the norm there are number of personnel changes; Harry Moulding is promoted to the first team, Kane Bevan is unavailable and Oli Carter has joined the RAF. Props Darren Clark (pictured above) and Dan Burns also miss out with injury. Clark has a perforated ear drum but should return next week whilst Burns has stitches in a nasty split that left his ear in two pieces. However their absences are supplemented by the selection of Pete Altham and Tom McGuinness whilst Jack Wilkinson and Dominic Moon make their first starts followng their recent injuries. Young flanker Jamie Gage also returns after a week’s rest to a troublesome shoulder problem Kick off is scheduled for 2.15 at Heywood Road with the squad convening in Preston at 11.45. The matchday eighteen is as follows:



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