Norwich are latest team to try and jeopardise Ipswich’s London 2 North title charge

Johnny Breedt

Johnny Breedt - Credit: Archant

Ipswich head coach Johnny Breedt believes his team are now playing knock-out rugby and has likened tomorrow’s crunch clash with Norwich, at Humber Doucy Lane, to a quarter-final.

Ipswich lost top-spot in the London 2 North league table last weekend when Saffron Walden took advantage of the Suffolk side’s blank weekend with a comfortable 41-5 win at South Woodham Ferrers.

Now with a game in hand, should Ipswich win their next two matches, they will go into their re-arranged last game of the season at South Woodham on April 26, knowing victory would clinch the title and a place in London 1 North next season.

Saffron sit a point ahead of Ipswich, having played 20 and won 18. Breedt’s men have played 19, winning 17.

The duo both face difficult away games at Holt, Saffron going to Norfolk tomorrow, while the Essex team also face a tough-looking trip to fourth-placed Chelmsford in their final game of the season, next Saturday.

Both teams would be thoroughly deserving of the championship crown, but Breedt wants to ensure his team wins the title.

“It’s one of the biggest games I have been involved with, since I have been at the club,” he said.

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“We are playing knock-out rugby now and I would compare our game with Norwich on Saturday to a quarter-final.

“If we lose a game, then we start relying on other teams to do us a favour and we can’t afford to do that.

“Tactics aside, there is not too much I can say to the boys to motivate them and they all know what is at stake, as well as being proud of having an unbeaten home record this season.”

Norwich visit their East Anglian rivals knowing their place in next season’s London North 2 competition is secure and, having run Ipswich close in Norfolk earlier on in the season, will fancy their chances.

“Norwich will push us really hard and it took a last-minute try for us to get a 27-24 win up there earier in the season,” Breedt added.

“They are safe from relegation and will come here with nothing to lose and try to enjoy the game. We think they will try to target us up front and will fancy themselves at set-pieces.

“But my boys have looked at the league table and feel really uncomfortable being second and not top of the table. They are not used to that.

“It promises to be an exciting day and hopefully we can get the right result.”

Admission to Saturday’s game is free, the bar will be open and the kick-off is 3pm.