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Friday, 01 August 2014

Seconds out: Furness hope A-teamers can boost ranks

PLAYER-COACH Corne Els is confident some second string players can step up to the mark and help Furness pull off a revenge mission at Windermere tomorrow (2.15pm kick-off).

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AS CLEAR AS MUD: Corne Els has a few selection issues to ponder ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Windermere

The third-versus-second Cumbria League tussle was supposed to take place last weekend, but the wintry conditions made the Dawes Meadow surface unplayable. Unfortunately, with this weekend originally scheduled to be a blank one, some Furness players had made plans away from the rugby field, leaving Els and co-boss Gary Pritchard with a selection headache for a game which could decide who finishes the regular season as runners-up behind Hawcoat Park.

“We are struggling a bit,” said Els, whose side lost 22-10 to the Lakes outfit back in September, but have made steady progress ever since to rise to second spot in the table.

“The game was meant to be last weekend so a few of the lads have made plans which is unfortunate, but it’s just one of those things.

“We will be calling up one or two lads from second team which gives them a chance. The thing is Windermere will probably be in the same situation as us, with players thinking it was a free weekend and planning to go away and stuff like that.”

The absentee list includes prop Adam Pearce and fellow forward George Kennedy, plus Els’ co-boss and hooker Gary Pritchard – meaning the Strawberry Grounds side could be lacking some power up front.

“We might just struggle a bit in the front, but it gives lads from the second team an opportunity to step up and make their mark and we are still going to go for it and try our best,” said the talismanic South African forward.

And joint-coach Gary Pritchard was in positive mood, saying: “We are going to have a look at our options, but I’m sure whoever comes up from the A-team won’t let anyone down. They will give it 100 per cent and you never know, we might unearth a new superstar.”

Promising winger Alex Brown is definitely available for Furness, which is good news as they look to their extend their winning run in the league to five matches.

Windermere captain Dan Harrison has seen his side make a mixed start to 2013, thrashing Kirkby Lonsdale A but losing at Millom, but with home advantage, the Lakes club will be confident of victory in what could be an excellent game.

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