Leaders H&B determined to hit the ground running
Hastings & Bexhill Rugby Club is determined to hit the ground running as it resumes its title quest.
The Kent One leaders will return to action after the festive break with a tricky-looking away fixture against fourth-placed Beccehamian tomorrow (Saturday).
Head coach Chris Brooks said: "We really want to hit the turf running with the first game of the new year. We had a pretty robust training session on Tuesday night and the guys are looking quite sharp.
"The whole club is riding high at the moment, we're enjoying fairly consistent success and we want to keep it that way."
H&B go into the new year with a six-point cushion at the top of the table having won 11 of their 12 matches so far, losing only by a single point away to second-placed Old Williamsonians.
With Ben Petty fit again after injury, H&B will head up the A21 tomorrow with a strong squad and hoping for a repeat of their 38-3 victory in September's reverse fixture.
"We ran them off the park pretty much in the fourth quarter," continued Brooks. "But it's a potential toughie and we'll approach them (Beccehamian) with a great deal of caution.
"They're not actually having a particularly good season, but they're a club with pedigree and we lost to them twice last season.
"Selection was difficult because it's (a question of) who you leave out. I have the luxury of 25, 30 players who can slot into one of those 18 slots. Competition for places is very strong."
H&B boast by far and away the best points difference in the division having scored more points than anybody else and conceded far fewer (just 81) while playing an entertaining brand of running rugby.
"If it's dry and the ground is firm, that plays to our strengths," added Brooks. "If it turns into a fight between the packs, that levels the playing field a bit and although our plan is to get it wide and run the opposition ragged, it's more difficult on a heavy pitch."
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