Raiders will do talking on the pitch

Worthing Raiders in action against Taunton
Worthing Raiders in action against Taunton

WORTHING Raiders Rugby Club head coach Kieron Dawson says his side will be doing their talking on the pitch in their title showdown at Henley Hawks on Saturday.

It’s a first versus second shoot-out as Raiders face the biggest game in the club’s history with the National 2 South title and automatic promotion at stake.

Second-place Hawks avoided a potential banana skin to win at Shelford last weekend and close the gap on Worthing to two points.

Henley, who have to beat Raiders to lift the title, have made no bones about their confidence and have suggested they fully expect to win – despite being beaten 49-5 at Roundstone Lane earlier in the season.

Dawson, however, is opting for quite the opposite approaching.

He said: “Who would have thought at the start of the season it would come down to the last game? For a sports fan it’s great but as a coach I would have liked to have it tied up last week, but if we are to win, it’s because we have done the hard work and will deserve it.

“We’ll just keep quiet. It’s typical of Henley and my knowledge of them, but we’ll go up there and do our talking on the pitch.

“If I was a player I would be struggling to sleep this week. As I have said all season, as a coach my impact is minimal, it’s the players on the pitch that do the job.”

Raiders hope Charlie McGowan will have his red card at Cornish All Blacks over-turned in a hearing this week to clear him to play and Jack Maslen will have recovered from a hamstring injury.

Dawson added: “Even if we lose the game we get the chance of the play-offs. We have done our homework on the possibilities there and have been covering all our bases. It’s not winner takes all as the loser will get a second chace at promotion.”