Siddal coach Gareth Greenwood says his side are firmly focused on righting the wrongs of last season ahead of Saturday’s NCL play off against West Hull (2.30).
The Premier Division’s top two sides meet at Chevinedge with the winner going straight through to the Grand Final at Widnes on Sunday, October 30.
Siddal lost out to Leigh Miners in last season’s decider, despite having gone into the game in stellar form, making them well aware of the unpredictable nature of the end-of-season knock out.
“We wanted to finish top and as a club we’re very proud of that,” said Greenwood, whose side finished the season in the clear at the top of the pile, six points clear of this weekend’s opponents.
“But we’re into knock out rugby now and anything can happen.
“We went into the final last year having won 10 on the bounce or something and beat them comfortably in the semi final but still ended up on the wrong end of things.
“We’ve beaten West Hull twice this year, but in terms of form I think it’s about even, they’ve had some good results recently.
“I think there’s been a bit more steel about us this year though and we’ve built up a bit of a stronger squad; when people have been missing, there’s not been a huge difference in the quality of the team we’ve been able to put out.
“The lads who were here last year are pretty determined.
“We’ve not had a week off after the league finished, we’ve kept training and kept training hard.
“We just want to get the job done this weekend now and make sure we’re in the final.”
Greenwood, who will be without the influential forward Byron Smith, who is in Australia, is especially keen to avoid adding extra fixtures to Siddal’s programme, especially with the likes of Leigh Miners and Rochdale Mayfield lurking in the top six.
“I honestly think any one of those sides could win it,” said Greenwood.
“Certainly, whoever loses in our game this weekend is going to be straight into a real 50/50 match against the side that comes through the third-to-sixth play offs.”