Vandals keen to salvage some derby pride

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HALIFAX Vandals and Old Rishworthians meet at Warley tomorrow in what is likely to be their last league meeting for a couple of seasons.

Tomorrow’s visitors are a satisfactory sixth in Yorkshire Three following a brief flirtation with Yorkshire Two rugby but Vandals are bottom and seemingly in need of a miracle to avoid the drop.

Vandals have five league matches left and are 15 points adrift of third-from-bottom Old Modernians, who occupy what could be the last safe position.

Vandals, who were beaten 20-16 in the first meeting this season at Copley in mid-October, have a selection headache in advance of the second derby instalment.

Injuries to some key players during last week’s 13-9 home defeat by Thornensians means that the starting line-up will not be named until tomorrow morning.

There is at least some good news for the hosts as the destructive Andy White returns after a persistent knee problem.

The Vandals know that they let slip a winning position last week, having played some good rugby throughout.

The players are desperate for another league victory and they would be the most rewarding of circumstances if they were to secure the Trevor Whitworth Memorial Trophy.

Rishworthians have let big leads slip in the second half to lesser opposition in the last fortnight. Last week they had to be content with a draw.

Rishworthians have named a strong side with the return of several players who were absent last week, including skipper Gary Morris.

Vandals’ second team host Old Otliensians and will be looking to make use of a strong line up at home.