SIMON SMITH: We are still in the hunt for second

SRUFC coach Simon Smith's column
SRUFC coach Simon Smith's column

Saturday’s narrow 20-17 defeat at Heath was disappointing for us all, but I can’t fault the effort of any of our players on the day.

Heath are a big, strong side and on a boggy, wet pitch, it was always going to suit them more than us.

It wasn’t a case of us being out-worked in the forwards, they merely pushed us back as we couldn’t get any grounding on the surface.

They were very dominant in the set-plays and with their driving mauls and we found it hard to contain them.

Having said that, we scored the same number of tries as them and it came down to small margins in the end.

Yes, we missed a penalty at the end, but It was a terrible day for kicking with the ground so slippy and wet, which was evident as their kicker also missed a couple of efforts.

Tom had already landed a superb conversion from out wide on the touchline that wouldn’t favour a right-footed player a little earlier in the game.

He also scored a superb try and 12 of our 17 points.

We are not out of the promotion race, we are still in second place and in the hunt.

Heath have to play York twice and all the teams around us have to play each other.

We have a tough game ahead of us this weekend at home to Moortown, who don’t forget, beat us at their place earlier in the season.

If we can get 14 or 15 points from our final three games, we will definitely be there or thereabouts come the end of the season and that’s what we’ll be aiming for.

It doesn’t stop at Moortown. We then have to travel to North Ribblesdale - easily the longest journey of the season - and they’ll be fighting for their lives as they’re battling relegation.

Then we have to play Keighley away and they’re never an easy side to take on, especially on home soil.

We’ll be without Phil Watson and Matty Young for the game against Moortown on Saturday, but they’re the only absentees.