Bulls can’t afford to slip up in showdown

Banbury Bulls' Giles Saar takes on Oxford Harlequins. Photo: Simon Grieve
Banbury Bulls' Giles Saar takes on Oxford Harlequins. Photo: Simon Grieve

If Banbury Bulls are to maintain their play-off push then Saturday’s showdown with Royal Wootton Basset is a ‘must-win’ game.

Bulls trail third-placed Wootton Bassett by four points in Wadworth 6X South West One East but could go above them with a maximum points victory at the DCS Stadium.

The win is what we’re after, five points would be even better but we just need to focus on the win

Bulls player-coach Matt Goode

Player-coach Matt Goode says first and foremost it will be all about getting the victory against the Wiltshire outfit who beat Bulls earlier in the season.

Goode will miss the game through injury but said: “The win is what we’re after, five points would be even better but we just need to focus on the win.

“I’m gutted to be missing the match but I know that we’ve got excellent players for Saturday. The players that came on from the bench at Oxford Harlequins were outstanding and it may be another case of that on Saturday.

“We’ve got good availability and we’ll be strong. We owe them one, we should have beaten them at their place, so we’ll be looking to overturn that result.

“They’re a rugged side, they don’t score many points but don’t concede many either. They don’t score as many points as you would expect them to against some of the teams they should beat quite comfortably.

“We’ve just got to go out there and impose our game on them. We need to keep it tight up front and if we can hold their pack, I’m sure our expansive game will show through.”

Besides Goode, Bulls could be without Tommy Gray, who picked up an elbow injury at Harlequins. But Sam Stoop, Jack Briggs and Callum Horne all return.