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Connors happy with Manor’s progression

PUBLISHED: 13:00 12 February 2015

Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors

Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors

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New Zealander reflects on win against rivals and weekend off

Eton Manor's Chris Jones attacks against Chingford (pic: Martin Pearl) Eton Manor's Chris Jones attacks against Chingford (pic: Martin Pearl)

Eton Manor take a break from London One North action this weekend, but head coach Jamie Connors is plotting how his team can keep on track to finish first.

The New Wilderness outfit trail Colchester by two points going into the final seven games of the campaign – with the pair going head-to-head on the final day.

Eton Manor's Reece Reed attacks against Chingford (pic: Martin Pearl) Eton Manor's Reece Reed attacks against Chingford (pic: Martin Pearl)

But Connors is trying to get his side to concentrate on the fixtures before that potentially pivotal clash at Manor on April 18.

He said: “We have given the players the whole week off. They are looking forward to it and when we come back it is three games on the bounce.

“Then another break and two on the bounce before the final break and the last two matches this year.

“We are looking at it as if they are little sets and we will tick off each one as we go along. Hopefully we go into the final section with a chance ahead of playing Colchester on the final day.”

Manor continued their return to top form with an excellent 24-8 home win against local rivals Chingford last weekend.

The hosts were behind inside five minutes, but tries from Nick Cooper-Hicks, Reece Reed, Michael Eghan and Garth Tucker secured the bonus-point success.

Connors added: “It was a good win and Chingford is never an easy game, but we played really well, especially in the second half.

“I can’t remember them getting out of their own half too many times and we did well to score four tries and get the bonus point.

“We were behind at half time, only 8-7, but we didn’t deserve to be. Chingford scored early on and then they were camped inside their own half and we dominated.

“We really should have scored more in the first half and we just needed to be more patient.”

The victory came at a cost, though, as Connors confirmed Jack Knowles would miss the rest of the season through injury.

“He has dislocated his elbow and broken or fractured a bone in that area as well so that is far from ideal,” added Connors.

“It’s disappointing for Jack. He’s a really good player and I’m gutted to not be able to pick him and gutted for him, but we have other guys that can come in.

“We had a few that went off skiing last Saturday, which didn’t go down well with me. But it is important not to just have 15 guys. We have probably used about 35 players this season, so it shows our strength in depth.”

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