Coach Smith buoyed by derby win but aware of Bridlington threat

Alex Dawson running to score his try
Alex Dawson running to score his try

Jubilant Old Brodleians coach Matt Smith has warned his players not to get carried away by the euphoria surrounding their 54-14 derby win over Old Crossleyans.

The Woodhead men’s eight-try display, plus 14 points from the boot of centre Phil Town, made it just about the perfect start to the season last Saturday.

However, Leeds Carnegie lock Smith is aware of Crocs’ troubled build-up to the season and believes Saturday’s trip to Bridlington could reveal a more accurate picture of their prospects for the season.

Smith said after last weekend’s thumping victory: “I’m happy with that, but being the kind of person I am, I’m disappointed to see 14 points at the side of their name.

“However, we were ruthless in our attacking play. We put our foot on their throats and kept it on and on.

“We have Bridlington away next and we lost over there last year.

“In fact some of the people at the club can’t remember the last time we got a result over there so it will be interesting to see how we go on.”

Brods fielded a handful of new or returning players against Crossleyans.

Smith thought a back row comprising of ex-Cleckheaton pair Ollie Akroyd and Alex Dawson, plus lineout ace Bob Sykes and replacement Luke Scrimshaw, had done particularly well.

He was also pleased with the debuts of home produced prop Reece Ward and Samoan Simanu Tusiga.

The latter, known around the club as Manu, scored seconds after coming on in the second half, combining an ability to beat defenders with lightning speed.

Tusiga came on in the centre, but Smith said: ““We were told he was a No 6. He looks a real athlete.”

Smith is rubbing his hands at the depth of talent which will soon be at his disposal.

“We have got five or six players all of first-team standard to come back so competition for places will be very high.”

Smith is anxious to develop a system in which good players will accept taking a turn in the reserve string. “The twos won the league last season but chose not to go up,” he said.

“I want us to be in a position where the 2nds can take promotion.”