Heath out to ground high flying visitors

Heath will be looking to halt a run of consecutive home losses to derby rivals Huddersfield YMCA in Yorkshire One tomorrow.

But coach Kevin Plant knows that will be far from easy against a side currently sitting second in the division.

“They had a fantastic start to the season and won their first nine, but they’ve had a couple of defeats now and dropped back to second,” said Plant, whose own side are on an impressive run of four wins from five starts, but did not play last week after their game fell victim to the weather.

“They have beaten us the last two times they have been down to West Vale, although we did manage a 10-10 up at their place when they weren’t doing so well.

“It’s a tough couple of weeks for us, with YMCA tomorrow and then the leaders Driffield next week before the Christmas break.

“I was mad keen to get our game on last weekend. When you’re winning you want to keep on winning, but it wasn’t to be.”

Plant, who expects to select from a position of strength after Ian Downsborough and James Watson both returned to the squad for last weekend’s game, believes performance on the day will be the major factor in deciding the outcome.

“It’s going to come down to how we perform,” said Plant.

“The last time they came down here they wanted it a little bit more than we did and we got given the runaround a little bit.

“They strengthened a lot over the summer and their back division is causing lots of problems for most teams in the league.

“We have a pack to compete with them or better them and we need to get that part of our game right.

“If we do that, we will give ourselves a chance.”

Ireland and Ulster flanker Stephen Ferris has undergone surgery after being injured in a RaboDirect PRO12 game last month.

Ferris suffered a tendon problem which occurred as a consequence of ankle damage sustained during Ulster’s fixture against Edinburgh.

He missed Ireland’s entire autumn Test programme as a result.