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London One North: Eton Manor must be at best to beat champs Tring at home admits Jamie Connors

PUBLISHED: 15:00 20 April 2017

Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors (left) with Simon Bottomley (centre) and Ben Thomas (pic: Martin Pearl).

Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors (left) with Simon Bottomley (centre) and Ben Thomas (pic: Martin Pearl).

Archant

A victory for the New Wilderness-based club would give them a major boost ahead of the 2017/18 campaign

Jamie Connors wants Eton Manor to sign off their London One North campaign with a morale-boosting victory at champions Tring to send a message to their division rivals for next season.

The New Wilderness-based club can only finish fifth and are 29 points behind their Hertfordshire counterparts.

Manor had hopes of pipping Tring to the title at the beginning of the campaign, but an opening-day loss to the eventual champions signalled the strength of Tring and they have gone on to win 24 of their 25 games to deservedly secure promotion.

“It is a shame we’re in the position we are in and we’re not able to give them a really good go in terms of promotion, but I think we certainly will in this game,” said Connors.

“Nevertheless, we have firm eyes on next season and what we can achieve, so we definitely want to go to Tring and play well and hopefully get a good result against the champs.”

Manor suffered a 42-21 loss at home to Tring on September 3, but have enjoyed a decent campaign following relegation last season.

Connors was slightly frustrated with the performance of his team in their opening-day defeat to Tring and hopes to put that right at Cow Lane this weekend.

The New Zealander admits the champions do not have many weaknesses, but backed Manor to turn up and deliver an impressive display.

“I don’t know a huge amount about them, but I think they like to throw the ball around a lot,” added Connors.

“At the start of the season they scored a lot of tries against us, but that was partly down to our poor defence.

“We weren’t quite right as a team at the start of the year, but Tring are just a strong side all around the park.

“Their forwards are good and they have no obvious weaknesses, so we will have to be at the top of our game to get something from the match.

“But it should still be an enjoyable occasion and the boys are really looking forward to it and the challenge of trying to sign off the season in style.”

A 17th win of the campaign would give Manor plenty of momentum going into the summer and they can take inspiration from their rivals.

Chingford won at Tring on March 11 and with the title already wrapped up, Connors will hope his team can hand the Hertfordshire club just their second loss of the season.

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