Date: Sunday 17th May
Venue: Sedgley Park
Swinton Lions dropped down to eighth in the table after their 28-16 defeat to local rivals Rochdale Hornets at Spotland last week.
Lions coach John Duffy acknowledged that his side were deservedly beaten despite having a lot of chances late on.
“Rochdale were the better team, especially in the first half,” commented Duffy. “We had a lot of opportunities to score in the second half and we didn’t take our chances.”
They face possibly their biggest test so far this season with the visit of league leaders Keighley Cougars and they will be without second rower Tommy Gallagher who has a quad injury.
“We’ve obviously got a massive game this weekend. Keighley are a very good team who are consistent in what they do. We’ve played them twice already this year so we know all about them. They’ve got better, where we’ve been a bit inconsistent so we’re going to have to really be on the money this week.”
Keighley Cougars were convincing, especially in the second period, in their 52-10 victory over Coventry Bears on what was an emotional day for all involved.
In beating the Bears they honoured the late Danny Jones with a victory and it was a day which took a lot out of the players according to coach Paul March.
“There were a lot of tired bodies after last week, not just physically but mentally,” he explained. “It took a lot out of us but we’re full of confidence and hopefully can maintain our 100 per cent record.”
Swinton Lions will be looking to bounce back however the Cougars will be out to protect their 100 per cent record as they are the only unbeaten side left in League 1.
“Obviously it will be a tough game at Swinton. We know a lot about them having played them in the iPro Cup at the start of the season and a lot last year. We know what their strengths and weaknesses are so we’ll go there full of confidence having not lost yet and hopefully we can keep the winning run going.”
Prediction: Swinton will need to be more clinical than they were against Rochdale to get the victory here as Keighley will be their toughest test yet. Cougars by 12.