Fylde travel to the East Midlands to take on Loughborough Students in National One on Saturday (ko 3pm). After their last minute defeat by high flying Darlington Mowden Park last Saturday, the visitors will hope for better luck to go alongside their much improved level of performances in recent weeks.
The Students are in 17th place in the division, 8 points ahead of Fylde, after winning five and losing nine games to date this season. They had a bad start to the campaign, with seven defeats in the first eight matches. They turned their season around with a high scoring 58-29 victory over Hull Ionians in late October and followed it up with three more wins in the past four games, including a splendid 21-24 victory at Blackheath.
The Lancastrians have struggled at Loughborough’s ground, losing their last four games there. This compares with four successive home victories at the Woodlands. The last time Fylde won on the Student’s ground was by 17-35 in April 2013.
Leading scorer for the Students is influential fly-half Owen Waters with 96 points to date, with wingers Jake Stapley and Tim Bitirim leading the try scoring ranks with six and four respectively.
Fylde make two changes in their starting line-up with Tom Burtonwood and Ben Vernon moving up from the bench to hooker and flanker respectively, with Ben Gregory and Harlan Corrie taking their places amongst the replacements along with a fit again Mark Irving.
15 Tom Carleton; 14 Henry Hadfield, 13 Connor Wilkinson, 12 Luke Fowden, 11 Tom Grimes; 10 Alex Dolly, 9 Greg Nicholls; 1 Dan Richardson, 2 Tom Burtonwood, 3 Adam Lewis, 4 Matt Garrod, 5 Olli Parkinson, 6 Ben Vernon, 7 Will Hopwood, 8 David Fairbrother.
16 Mark Irving, 17 Ben Gregory, 18 Harlan Corrie, 19 Nick Ashcroft, 20 Greg Smith.