With Keighley one step away from securing an immediate return to the Co-operative Championship, Cougars winger Gavin Duffy says the squad are determined to grasp their opportunity and make the most of Sunday’s Championship One Play-off final against Workington Town at The Halliwell Jones Stadium (1.30pm)
Keighley clawed their way back from 16-2 down against Rochdale Hornets to seal their place in the final and Duffy has attributed the team’s success this season to head coach Jason Demetriou, who inspired Sunday’s spirited fightback.
“It was great to get the win after the start we had on Sunday,” said Duffy. “We started slowly and we were chasing the game. Jason told us at half time to carry on what we were doing but not to force the game as we had plenty of time and his words really boosted us.
“He has brought a lot of new ideas to the club this season and all the boys like him. We have played more expansive rugby which has worked well for us all year. Our goal at the start of the season was to gain automatic promotion but when Swinton won the league we had to re-asses – we’ve got to the final and now our goal is to win.
“We will train hard this week – the same as usual. We will concentrate mostly on ourselves and not worry too much about Workington. We know with the right game plan we can win.”
The Cougars have faced fellow finalists Workington Town three times so far this season with Workington coming out on top twice but Duffy, who played in Keighley’s Championship One Play-off final winning side from 2009, say’s that those results won’t be on their minds.
“Losing to Workington two weeks ago will not affect us,” he said. “We know that we need to turn up with the right attitude. We’ve played them a few times this season so we know them well enough and how they play.
“Most of the squad played in the play-off final two years ago so we know what to expect and that gives us an advantage, but it’s important we treat it as a normal game. There’s no extra pressure on us, we will go in to the game confident and hopefully get the win.
“We’re confident we can get the result we need on Sunday and if we do then we’re confident that we can compete in the Championship and finish in the top half of the table next season.”
The Co-operative Championships Kids Go Free offer returns for this year’s Grand Finals Day (Sunday October 2) meaning that for the first time at a Rugby League Final, children have free admission when accompanied by a paying adult.