SCARBOROUGH RUFC skipper Nick Ingham is expecting a big performance from his side’s front eight when they entertain Keighley on Saturday.
Ingham, who was not entirely satisfied with some aspects of the forwards’ game in last week’s narrow defeat at Knottingley, expects that an improved display from the pack will be key to his side’s chances of getting a result against Keighley.
Ingham said: “Keighley are a tough side to play against, both at home and away.
“Much like the Knottingley side we played last week, they are always strong in the forwards.
“We anticipate that they will bring it to us hard and fast up front and we will have to match them in the forwards.
‘‘There are some schools of thought that our pack did not perform very well last Saturday.
“I do not fully agree with that, but I know that all of the forwards, myself included will go out and put in a performance for the team and prove themselves this week. We will need to do so because Keighley try to dominate the game through their pack.”
Scarborough have been forced to re-shuffle their back line once again with Marcus Edwards and Craig Farrell both unavailable.
Graeme Jeffrey and Tom Ratcliffe move into the centres and Rob James shifts to full-back. Andy Baird and Cory Dennis, who makes his first-team debut following an impressive performance for the Vikings last week, will play on the wings.
In the forwards, Wayne Adams will start at number 8 again as Phil Watson is among the substitutes following his unavailability last weekend.
Ingham is however very confident in the ability of the players who are coming into the side for this week’s game.
He added: “Although it is a blow to lose players of the quality of Marcus Edwards and Craig Farrell, we have got two quality players in Graeme Jeffrey and Tom Ratcliffe replacing them in the centres, so we have still got a really strong side for Saturday’s match.
“Cory played for the Vikings last week and Mike Holder was very impressed with him, so, due to the players who are missing he has a chance to prove himself in the first team already.
“Cory, who is at university here, played first-team rugby at Sedbergh School so we know that he is used to playing at a really high standard.
“Wayne Adams keeps his place at number 8 because he has been playing and training very well.
“That is the way that it works at this club, if you are playing well and putting it in during training, then you will keep your shirt.”
Ingham has been boosted by improved numbers at training this week following coach Dave Beck’s rallying call.
Ingham believes that the more progress Scarborough can make in training the better the chances they have of ironing out some of the inconsistencies that have cost them victories so far this season.
Ingham continued: “The players have taken Dave Beck’s words on board and numbers at training, that had been less than what we expect at times, were much better on this week.
“We have achieved some great results so far this season but at the same time we have suffered a few disappointing defeats.
“We lost out by just one point at North Ribblesdale and then again on Saturday we were defeated by just a few points at Knottingley.
“It has been really frustrating so far this season because as Dave Beck has said, we currently have the strongest squad here that Scarborough has had in a long time, it is just taking longer than we hoped for it to all come together.”
Keighley made a slow start to the season, losing two out of their first three games in Yorkshire One.
However, since mid-September they have been in good from and they have won their last three games on the spin. Last time out, Keighley ended Huddersfield YMCA’s recent resurgence when they thumped them 38-7 at Skipton Road.