Coach Talk – A report by Steve Hazzelby

Going into the last two games of the season before Christmas it is worth reviewing our efforts thus far. Played 13 games, won 10 and lost 3. A solid third place and putting the pressure on the top two.

Last Saturday we were away to close rivals Fylde. They had started the season well with just two losses and one draw and were five points above us in second place. This was always going to be a close, hard fought battle between a team who like to play open, fast rugby and a team who have one of the best defences in the league.

Early exchanges were uncompromising with both teams testing each others defences. Fylde scored their first try after eleven minutes after a good lineout and wide play from their back line putting them 7-0 in the lead. We didn’t play our best rugby in the first half where we squandered chances through unnecessary errors and frustrating penalties. Fylde went further ahead on 31 minutes with a well taken try from their very good full back Tom Carlton, giving them a solid 14-0 lead at half time.

The second half was much better for the Tigers with a very encouraging performance. Our set piece was solid, our attacking shape good and our ball retention was excellent. Time and again we put the pressure on the Fylde defence often playing from within our own half  and making huge inroads into their 22. This was rewarded with a great try from young prop James Harper after 50 minutes converted by Steve Collins. We added another three points with a penalty from Piggy to put us right back in the game going into the last 15 minutes.

Despite this excellent second half performance we were unable to get the win and Fylde took the points with a 10-17 win. We did get the losing bonus point but a draw would probably have been the right result after a massive effort from all of the boys. Despite the loss our spirits are high and we know that to win against the top teams you have to take your chances on the day.

Next Saturday we entertain Scunthorpe in our last home game before Christmas. They have not started the season well but we are taking nothing for granted and are looking for a reaction after last weeks disappointment. I hope you all come along and support your wonderful Tigers team. Enjoy the game and the day.

Cheers Hazz

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