WESTOE PREVIEW

By D Whittle

Huddersfield take on Westoe in a must win game as they look to carry on their promotion charge in a crucial weekend.

League leaders Rossendale take on third placed Sale, so nothing other than a victory will do for Field. 

Manager Lee Paxman said: “Sale play Rossendale so if we win we will either gain ground on Rossendale or pull away from Sale. 

“We know it’s a massive weekend for us.

But Field face a resilient Westoe side who have won their last three games, including their first away success at Bradford & Bingley. 

Paxman said: “We have a lot of experience against Westoe and we have rarely come out on top. It would be great to put that right and put in performance I know we are capable of. 

Westoe were also relegated with Field last season, but it is Field who have made a better start to life in National League Three North. 

The visitors made the journey over from South Shields last year to narrowly win 30-32, including a sparkling display from Matthew Mellish.

Mellish missed the start of the season with a hamstring injury, but has subsequently returned as Field will look to keep the number ten quiet.

Huddersfield make just one change to the starting team that won at Firwood Waterloo, as Gareth Lewis returns to the blind side as Ross Thornton drops to the bench. 

Jack Moon replacing Elliot Knight on the bench is the only other change as Field prepare for a possible turning point in the season.

Paxman added: It’s a massive game against a side who have hit a bit of form. We’re expecting a tough contest on a heavy pitch.”

But Westoe have taken a blow as a flooded pitch has affected their preparation, meaning that their regular Thursday training session was cancelled.

The forecast for this weekend suggests it could be a chilly morning at Lockwood Park, but should remain dry for the fixture.

As Field look to increase the pressure on leaders Rossendale, a bonus point win would be the ideal result regardless of other outcomes.

Both sides come into this fixture on the back of bonus point wins, as Field scored seven tries in their demolition of Firwood last week and Westoe continued with their revival with an impressive 29-7 win over Burnage. 

The fixture at Lockwood Park kicks off at the earlier time of 2:15pm.

1. Alex Battye
2. Ben Morrill
3. Anthony Stringwell
4. Nick Rhodes
5. Gavin Rhodes
6. Gareth Lewis
7. Ben Hoyle
8. Nick Sharpe
9. Joel Hinchliffe
10. Giles Hetherington
11. Michael Clark
12. Tom Owen
13. Ben Mitchell
14. Elliot Hodgson
15. Tom Hodson
16. Ross Thornton
17. Edward Birkhead
18. Jack Moon

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