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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Els leading way in Blues’ revival

SPRINGBOK ace Corne Els has been setting the rugby union fields alight with some barnstorming performances this season.

CUMBRIA LEAGUE RU

The outstanding South African forward enters the fray tomorrow with his Furness side looking to pick up more points at Kirkby Lonsdale 2nds, and joint player-coach Gary Pritchard saying: “Corne Els has had a fantastic season so far and we hope that continues.”

Furness have already taken winning points against Kirkby Lonsdale this season, albeit in farcical circumstances when the visitors couldn’t raise a full side at The Strawberry Grounds.

The Blues can only hope Kirkby 2nds will be out in force this time, especially as the Barrow outfit will be looking to get some game time under their belts – having just had a blank weekend – before the Blues’ monster clash against neighbours Hawcoat Park next week.

One player who will not feature tomorrow is Pritchard, due to work commitments, but he is anticipating a good game at Underley Park.

Furness have scored victories in the last two games, winning 20-12 at Penrith A and then a 30-13 derby victory against Millom.

They are taking virtually a full squad to Kirkby Lonsdale with regular hooker Piers Cleaver back in the side. Skipper and joint-coach Els is fit and well and will be leading the side from the second row as usual, and the front row is expected to be Andries Venter, Adam Pearce and George Kennedy.

Pritchard said: “We are not underestimating Kirkby Lonsdale but I am expecting to win the game and hopefully it will set us up for Hawcoat Park the week after. We have prepared well and are quite optimistic that we will win.

“Things are really starting to look up. Hopefully these next two weeks if we can get two wins, we will be up in the top-four play-off positions which is where we want to be.

“We have got the balance just about right at the moment.”

Furness A-team have no game. They were supposed to be playing Kirkby Lonsdale 3rds, who have pulled out of the league.

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