Ipswich warned, don't lose your cool
RUGBY UNION: Ipswich rugby players have been warned to "keep their cool" in the face of any possible provocation by Old Albanians who visit Humber Doucy Lane on Saturday.
IPSWICH rugby players have been warned to "keep their cool" in the face of any possible provocation by Old Albanians who visit Humber Doucy Lane on Saturday.
Last season, when Ipswich lost home and away to the Hertfordshire side, there was a brawl in one game and plenty of intimidation.
"They are without doubt the most abrasive side in the league and have a reputation for the way they play" said Ipswich captain Jeff Searle.
"I have told our team they must keep their heads, stick to our game plan and not get sucked into any fracas that could develop the breakdown in play."
Old Albanians, second in the London League Division Two North, and leader Hertford are the only two sides to maintain an unbeaten record.
They have three straight wins, but Ipswich are third from bottom with only one win from their three league games. Ipswich's only
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victory came against Diss, who lost their third consecutive game to Old Albanians by 32 points to eight last Saturday.
"The irony is that I feel we are playing better rugby than we did last season" added the Ipswich captain.
"We have a talented squad of players, with several newcomers, but so far we have not been getting the results our players deserved".
Last Saturday Ipswich lost by 30 points to 21 at Bishops Stortford.
"It was a couple of silly mistakes, after we had led by 17 points to ten at half-time, that cost us victory" continued Searle.
"Against Old Albanians we must play our style of rugby which is to spread the ball wide and give our runners a chance – and not allow them to dictate the game and tie us up with the ball in contact situations."
Ipswich are forced to make two changes from last week. Nick Rush is working, so his place in the back row is taken by Alex Primmer. Ace Van Heerden has a family commitment so Bryn Kerr moves back into the centre, allowing Olly Johnson to return at scrum half.
Although Primmer has featured in second row and at number eight, it will be the first time he has played for the club at blind side forward. But having led the tackle count table last Saturday, his defence is likely to be vital
Ipswich Magpies also have a home game tomorrow against Old Albanians second team and both matches are preceded by a vice
Ipswich: Stephens, Wythe, Evans, Shurety, Eley, Searle (J), Captain, Primmer, Murphy, Johnson, Hines, Novosad, Brotherton, Kerr (B), Hadwen, Ryan. Replacements: Hughes, Reeve, Brigginshaw.
Ipswich MagpiesTynan, Fairclough, Edwards, Price, Young, King, Griffiths, Bolton (R), Kerr (R), Harding, Searle (Jon), Horne, Woodmansee, Wilson, Kerr (A). Replacements; Keely, Foley, Kersey.