Cooper: Crocs will be fired up by reverse

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Old Crossleyans’ director of rugby Howard Cooper is tipping a positive reaction to last week’s shock home loss to Wheatley Hills ahead of tomorrow’s crucial trip to fellow high flyers West Hartlepool.

Cooper blamed the Broomfield side’s own profligacy in possession for the 11-10 reverse, the visitors sealing an unlikely win with a penalty four minutes from time.

“We totally dominated the game, which makes losing like that extremely frustrating,” said Cooper, whose side led 10-3 at half time.

“They were barely in our half all game; they got a charge down try in the second half and apart from that the only time they got over half way was at the end, when the lad kicked the penalty.

“We can blame whoever we like - the referee, bad luck - but the bottom line is that if you create as many chances as we did, both to score tries and kick goals, and you don’t take them then it is extremely costly.

“We want a positive reaction from the players tomorrow and I think we’ll get it.”

Tomorrow’s contest pits fifth-placed Crocs against the side immediately above them, so motivation is unlikely to be lacking.

“We couldn’t have a better game really,” said Cooper.

Crocs have injury doubts over winger Billy Hammond and forward Tony Oxley, although Cooper was hopeful both would recover in time to feature in coach Neil Spence’s selection.