Big cup day can go ahead for Stewarts & Lloyds

S&L take on Staffordshire side Newcastle in the Senior Vase tomorrow
S&L take on Staffordshire side Newcastle in the Senior Vase tomorrow

It is a case of try again for many sides this weekend – not least Stewarts & Lloyds.

They were thwarted in their attempts to take on Newcastle in their RFU Senior Vase Midlands semi-final three weeks ago and will give it another go on Saturday.

With the weather having added some unwelcome strain to the fixture programme and promotion still very much on the minds of the men in black, a cup encounter, even at this stage of the competition, might be seen as an inconvenience.

Not so at Occupation Road.

“As we said before, it is a long time since we’ve been to this point of a cup competition so we’re going to enjoy it,” said manager Gary Mitchell.

“This game is the talk of the club and we’re expecting it will be a big afternoon.

“It is an international weekend as well so we’re hoping for a crowd and we will make it a proper rugby club night.

“It was perhaps a blessing in disguise when the game was called off before.

“We want it to be a proper day for the club. We want to play on the main pitch and not tucked away on a back pitch so the whole club and enjoy it.

“It’s an important thing for us.

“We’re happy with the way the league is. We’ve got a fair few games at our place and if sides come here and beat us then fair play to them. They have had to have worked for it.

“We’re comfortable with our fixtures and the league will look after itself, if you like.

“The cup is not a distraction at all. We want to keep going.”

They certainly come into the game in decent shape having beaten St Ives 53-10 last time out.

“It was a good result and we got the bonus point which we were after,” Mitchell added.

“It also turned over a loss there earlier in the season.

“Kev (Manson, head coach) is happy with the team and we’re at full strength.

“The coaches have been practising a few things and they came off.

“We’ll now be looking to expand on that on Saturday.”