Dewsbury Rams head coach Lee Greenwood is looking forward to seeing how his side cope on a different type of pitch this weekend against Newcastle.
The Rams take on the North East club in the Challenge Cup fifth round on Sunday.
GAME ON TV
“I am looking forward to it, we will be on the BBC red button and as other sports are called off it could have huge viewing figures.
“We might get a big audience watching us which is great.
“We will probably be put down as favourites for the game because we play in the league above and are in a good run of form. If you know quite a bit about Newcastle it isn’t as straight forward as that, they are heavy spenders in league one, and they are going for promotion. They would love to knock off a Championship team on TV as well.”
ON NEWCASTLE AS AN OPPONENT
“They’ll be gunning for us, they know we’ve only played on heavy pitches, that we’ve played more games than them and that we’ve just played in a hard game on Wednesday. They will be looking to start fast and catch us out, thinking we might be a bit tired and so will want to score a few blows early on.
“They start fast in games I’ve seen. They like to score early on. They did that to Workington, Coventry and Keighley. Siddal were a team who got stuck into them in the last round. Other than that they are a team who like to get a few scores up. It’s hard to judge them, they’ve played two league games and two cup games and only one was at home.
“I think that’s going to be the big challenge playing on their 3G surface this weekend. With some of the state of the pitches we’ve been playing on Sunday will be different. However it does help that we are training on a 3G surface.
“If I am the Newcastle coach I’d want my team starting fast and seeing if we could catch them out with the pace of the game, because that is something they might not be used to with having had to play on slow muddy pitches.
“From our point of view we are looking forward to it. The shirts are the same colour as when we’ll finish, boots will be cleaner. Chilly the kit man is happier, so everyone is sort of looking forward to it.
“What you should find is everything being played a bit quicker with it being dryer. The challenge is doing the simple things right but quicker. Defensively it might be harder because it’s on a quicker track.”
THE MENTAL AND PHYSICAL CHALLENGE
“We have played two games in a week and one of those is in Cumbria where you are not getting back untill the early hours on Thursday. Then you are preparing for Sunday, so you haven’t had time to reflect on Wednesday’s win. That will be the challenge to see if we can back it up.
“We didn’t pre-empt to beat Whitehaven but we knew if we did it would be three games in a week so we needed to be smart squad wise.”
A COMPETITIVE SQUAD
“It wasn’t a case of play well Wednesday and you’ll definitely play on Sunday. What Wednesday was for some of the guys was getting in to the reckoning. The last time some played was in the Keighley game where they didn’t look like Championship players. This was then their next opportunity and they showed on Wednesday with their attitude and toughness that they can be relied on to be called upon to come into the team whether it be Sunday, in a week or a month down the line.
“There was a number of players who didn’t play Wednesday and so they’ve had a week rest and want to get back into the team. It’s a squad management thing rather than an individual outlook.
“The lads who missed out on Wednesday were disappointed and do want to play Sunday. That shows the group we have got, it also helps that we are winning. If you are losing constantly the camp can get downbeat and you tend to get some people not overly bothered if they miss a game. Whereas if you are winning people want to play and don’t want to lose their place.”
“We have a few knocks from Wednesday but most are fine, we’ll take another look before I name my team.
“Adam Ryder won’t be playing Sunday. He hurt his calf on Wednesday and there isn’t any point risking him our squad isn’t big enough. So if I can rest him and then he’s fit for the next league match that’s the right thing to do.”