Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Westoe Have the Energy for a Trophy Glory Push

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Westoe Have the Energy for a Trophy Glory Push

Article excerpt

Byline: By Nick Purewal

The road to Twickenham might be more littered with pitfalls than the last time Westoe made it to HQ ( but the North One side hope to move a step closer to playing there on Saturday.

The South Shields side bid to progress their path to glory with a home tie against Loughborough Students in round two of the EDF Energy Trophy's north section.

Promotion to North One two years ago coincided with a trip to Twickers for the Powergen Intermediate Cup final, Westoe losing 21-11 to Morley.

The EDF Trophy, however, offers a much stiffer test with teams from National One in contention.

Westoe could be forgiven for thinking Midlands Two East side Loughborough will offer straightforward opposition ( but a glance at the visitors' league table reveals a stern test on its way.

Loughborough have had nine straight wins, scoring 348 points and conceding only 60, and last weekend they hammered Newark 62-6.

However, Westoe skipper Gareth Nesbitt is more concerned with his own side's travails.

He said: "We would dearly like to test ourselves against the top guns of English rugby.

"Any progress will be financially rewarding to our club, which has a far smaller budget than most of those we play.

"What we must strive to achieve is consistency and it is down to all the lads to play their part."

Tynedale face a testing trip to Rugby Lions ( and the timing could not be worse with the Corbridge outfit travelling to Leicester Lions the following week.

With National League Three firmly in mind, chairman of rugby John Shotton takes the chance to rest key players ( especially as the two sides meet in the league on December 16.

Captain Phil Belgian's hamstring injury could see him out of action for a month and the likes of Ross Samson, Mark Laycock, Andrew Murray and Ben Duncan all sit out the trip to Webb Ellis Road.

Shotton said: "With the best will in the world we are concentrating on the league and making sure our stronger players are available for those more important matches. …

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