Preston Grasshoppers vs. Harrogate – Kick Off 2.30pm
Hoppers line up for the game against Harrogate shows little change from the squad who travelled back from Bromsgrove last Saturday evening with a nap hand of five points with just Eddie Webster and Will Lees swapping places.
1 Andy Irving, 2 Phil Mills, 3 Pete Altham, 4 Ally Murray, 5 Sam Wallbank , 6 Kilian Wallace, 7 Will Lees, 8 Dominic Moon (Captain), 9 Craig Aikman, 10 Lloyd Davies, 11 Sam Kendall, 12 Jack Ward, 13 Phil Baines, 14 Conor Truman, 15 Sean Taylor.
16 Jack Wilkinson, 17 Danny Madden, 18 Eddie Webster, 19 Joab Murphy, 20 Sam Whyte.
With just seven games of the 2013/14 season remaining (five of which are home fixtures) Hoppers will be hoping to continue their climb up the table after a controlled victory at Finstall Park last Saturday and certainly won’t be looking to repeat the disastrous first half performance at Claro Road earlier this season.
Forty points to five down at the interval was turned round in the second half but the home side clung on for a narrow five points victory breathing a sigh of relief at the sound of the referee blowing for no-side.
Last weeks victory over Bromsgrove was achieved through a disciplined performance and capped by a maiden try from Conor Truman and in doing so gave Hoppers the four try bonus point. A four from five goal kicking performance from Lloyd Davies was capped by his first ever try for the 1st XV and added to some fine line kicking giving good position.
Our opposition this Saturday sit just five points above ourselves and comfortably in mid table. They’ve consolidated after promotion last season and will be looking to build on this next term at their new home, somewhere Hoppers travelling band of supporters will be looking forward to visiting.
The Yorkshiremen are one of our more regular opponents since league fixtures began back in 1987. Out of the twenty matches played, Harrogate have won twelve to our five with another three being drawn including both games in the 2000/1 season. Hoppers completed the double in Harrogate’s relegation season and recorded a victory at Claro Road for the first time since the one point victory in 2007/8. In fact this was only the second league victory at this particular place in West Yorkshire out of ten attempts.
With fixtures going back to the 1954/55 season the full record reads, Hoppers nine wins against Harrogate’s twenty five with five ending all square and seven being cancelled for various reasons. The sequence started back on the 23rd of October 1954 at Claro Road.
Fixtures for Hoppers other Senior sides this coming weekend are as follows;
Hoppers 2 vs. Stockport 2 (Away)
Hoppers 3 vs. Aldwinians 2 (Away)
Hoppers 4 vs. Vale of Lune 3 (Away)
Hoppers 5 vs. Garstang 2 (Home)
Hoppers 6 vs. Chorley 2 (Home)
Hoppers Women vs. Manchester (Home) on Sunday
Picture courtesy of Mike Forshaw.