Big game for Albion

December 2, 2021
December 2, 2021 Albion

Plymouth Albion’s topsy turvy season starts a defining run as the midseason approaches with the visit of Darlington Mowden Park this weekend. With a similarly punishing travel schedule, the team from the far Northeast have had an equally tough start to the season with just one win more on the log than the Ocean Cities finest and they will certainly be targeting their visit to the Brickfields.

Of note, and perhaps quite ominous for Albion, is the fact DMP have won four of their last six games. Like Albion, this includes a win at third-placed Chinnor and there is certainly no doubt they are a well-drilled outfit. The similarities continue in that are also showing a bit of form currently as DMP also lost their opening five games! In the historical match up, honours are near even too with Albion edging the narrowest 6:4 lead!

Looking to the game this weekend and Albion once again show minimal changes to the XV that was narrowly pipped at basement side Tonbridge. Up front Ramaz Rukhadze misses out with a concussion with Danny Southworth stepping up. Out wide, free-scoring Alex Ducker gets a well-earned rest with a slight knock and Royal Marine Craig Duncan steps in for his run on debut at 15.

With a more settled XV there is expectation at Brickfields that now is the time for Albion to get back into a winning groove and coach Damian Welch remained upbeat saying, “There’s no heads down in the camp following last weekend, we realise that the weather was a great leveller and it was always going to be a close nip and tuck game in which either side could come out on the right end of the result so we will stick to our process and move on to welcome DMP. Having taken a few learning points on board I’m confident that the boys will be looking forward to putting in a good home performance, it’s been a while since we have produced at home to the standards that we know we are capable of and that will be a major focus and driver this week

For those thinking about coming along, the DMP fixture is certainly entertaining with 136 points scored in their last two encounters! With fellow basement teams Leeds and Taunton next on the log for Albion, this would be a prime time to get the show on the road and head for the mid-table at the halfway point of the season approaches.

By Chris Bentley