SIMON SMITH: Pride in our battling character

Simon Smith's weekly column
Simon Smith's weekly column

We faced up to a real test of character at Wheatley Hills on Saturday and I was proud that we passed that examination.

They were very strong and powerful up front, we expected them to tire, but they didn’t. They made us battle for everything.

At 22-15 with 10 minutes to go they were camped on our line and we were absolutely battered for five minutes.

If they scored to make it 22-22 then I think, with the momentum, they would have gone on to win the game.

We found out a lot about ourselves during that period.

It wasn’t a perfect performance, but it was a great win against a team that will be very hard to beat this season.

It reminded me of a quote that came out of the successful West Leeds camp last season as they prepared for a trip to play at Twickenham.

They said that you will do a lot for your mates on the rugby field, and that is so right.

This is where players and teams find that extra 5 to 10%

If you train hard and play hard with your teammates then it makes you stronger at key times in the game.

I’m really pleased that we showed that on Saturday.

It is about sustaining that on Saturday when we entertain Selby.

We have a few niggles and a few unavailable, but you have to expect that because this is amateur sport.

It opens it up for somebody else to come in and sample first-team rugby, which is important.

Over the season we will need 25-30 players, so we need to make sure that players are blooded at first-team level.

Selby may have not won a game this season, but they will make it hard for us.

They came to our place on the last day of the season and beat us, spoiling our party, so we know what to expect.

There are no easy games in this league and if you produce a poor performance it will cost you.