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Sheffield Eagles v Dewsbury Rams

Sunday 15th July 2018, 12:00pm

Championship - Round: 21

Stats over last 8 encounters

Points

216
219

Wins

3
5

Loses

5
3

Tries

40
37

Sheffield Eagles take on Dewsbury Rams tomorrow at the Olympic Legacy Park in a crucial Betfred Championship clash.

With three rounds of the regular season remaining, just one point separates the two teams after Dewsbury jumped above Sheffield with a closely-fought victory over Barrow Raiders last weekend.

The Eagles were the latest team to be defeated by Toronto Wolfpack at Lamport Stadium as the latter picked up their League Leaders Shield crown following the match.

Jake Spedding scored Sheffield’s only try of the contest, which ended 68-4 to the Wolfpack. The Eagles’ woes were compounded as Ryan Millar looks set for a spell on the sidelines after rupturing both biceps.

Last Time Out

Sheffield’s first visit to Toronto ended in a heavy defeat at the hands of the full-timers.

Chase Stanley and Adam Higson both scored braces for the Wolfpack while Spedding grabbed Sheffield’s lone four-pointer.

It was Stanley who opened the scoring before Ryan Brierley also crossed.

Spedding’s interception cut the deficit to eight points before Bob Beswick and Richard Whiting extended the hosts’ advantage.

Matt James was sin-binned for a shoulder charge and Higson got on the scoresheet with a 38th minute effort.

Higson crossed for the first try of the second period before Nick Rawsthorne and Blake Wallace both touched down.

Toronto added four more tries in the final quarter courtesy of Gareth O’Brien, Stanley, Liam Kay and Andrew Dixon.

Dewsbury claimed their first victory in five games as they scraped past Barrow 22-20 at the Tetley’s Stadium.

The Rams overturned a 12-6 half-time deficit after Jack Teanby scored the West Yorkshire side’s only try of the first period while four Jamie Dallimore goals and a Matty While try put Barrow ahead.

Sam Day and Gareth Potts both notched inside the opening 13 minutes of the half to give Dewsbury their second lead of the afternoon.

Dean Parata’s converted try in the final quarter gave Barrow the edge once more and another Dallimore penalty made it 20-16 to the visitors.

However, Lucas Walshaw levelled matters soon after and James Glover added the goal which proved to be the difference.

Key Battle

Jake Spedding and Menzie Yere were the centres for Sheffield against Toronto last Saturday and they will be wanting to make more of an impact on home turf this weekend.

Spedding scored the Eagles’ only try of the contest while Yere, despite not getting on the scoresheet, did take in some typically powerful carries.

The duo will have to take on the likes of Adam Ryder and Lucas Walshaw on Sunday, the former having just made his debut after signing from Keighley Cougars.

Ryder was one of the Cougars’ more prolific try-scorers this season before the club found itself in financial difficulties while Walshaw’s best rugby has come in a Rams kit.

The tall centre/back-rower can interchange with James Glover, who kicked the winning points for Dewsbury against Barrow last weekend.

With good options available at Neil Kelly’s disposal, the battle of the centres will certainly be one to watch at the Olympic Legacy Park.

Coaches Comments

Eagles Director of Rugby on preparation after Toronto game, plus players making possible comebacks: ““You can still see the tiredness in them. We have got to get rid of it and I talked to them after training and said there’s no excuses.

“We need to be good, we need to make sure we get the result by performing to the best of our ability.

“They were still a bit jaded but hopefully by tonight (Friday) and (having) the rest tomorrow, they are firing for Sunday.

“Jon Magrin will hopefully be back, Ben Blackmore’s got a bit of a chance.

“Matty Costello and James Bentley come back into it, there’s a number of fresh faces which will hopefully help us a little bit.”

Dewsbury coach Neil Kelly after his side beat Barrow and discipline problems during the game : “I am really pleased with the effort the players are putting in to it. Now it gives us a challenge to go to Sheffield next week and add to the win we have got against Barrow,”

“I was disappointed with the penalty count against, it wasn’t down to one thing really, it was a myriad of different things. We have got to go away and look at it, I don’t want our ill-discipline to be the reason we get closer to the heart of the fire as it were.

“The win has reinstated the three point gap we have between ourselves and Swinton which is good. Now if we do the right things at Sheffield next week we’ll be looking to finish 8th rather than looking over our shoulder. It’s a fine line we have created ourselves but we have to keep that fire burning below us.”