Machin issues challenge to Reading AbbeyBy Mike Mellor
April 13, 2012
Ian Machin is urging his Abbey side to dig deep for tomorrow’s South West 1 East relegation showdown with in-form Swanage and Wareham (3pm kick-off).
Both sides have two games in which to avoid the drop and the Abbey coach knows his team will need to re-focus after the Easter break and play to their full potential to get a favourable result.
Although Swanage are currently three points and two places behind Abbey, they have won their last two games against tough opposition.
In their last outing they followed up a shock 27-25 win at table-toppers Maidenhead by seeing off Coney Hill 38-6.
Abbey lost 28-13 at Salisbury a fortnight ago, a far better result than many at that venue. Their excellent performance boosted morale, reinforcing the belief that Abbey can match anyone in the league on their day.
But defeat tomorrow will leave the threat of relegation hanging over Abbey going into their last remaining fixture at Maidenhead on April 21.
Swanage made the most of home advantage and a stronger pack in the last meeting between the sides, winning 33-21.
But Abbey had a good training session in midweek and are in optimistic mood.
There is a pre-match lunch so the Rosehill team will be looking for vocal support as they strive to maintain their league status.
Abbey’s teenage scrum-half Reuben Norville will present the club with his international shirt after playing for Scotland Under-16s over Easter.
Teams from England, Scotland, France, Wales, Canada, USA, Netherlands and Belgium took part in the International tournament at Wellington School.
Norville is Abbey’s first youth player to represent Scotland.