Kingstone Press League 1 preview: Hemel Stags v Newcastle Thunder

Hemel Stags coach Troy Perkins was pleased with his side’s victory over South Wales Scorpions.

“It was an improvement on the previous week,” he said. “South Wales battled hard and threw a lot at us. Defensively I thought we were pretty good in only conceding one try. We probably could have scored a few more points.

“We’ve got to keep improving and this week will be a bigger challenge against Newcastle.

“They’re one of the front runners and we know it’s going to be tough; they’ve got a big pack and a couple of smart halves and some pace out wide. We need to muscle up up front and then build on that.”

Stanley Gene, the Newcastle Thunder coach, said: “We’re not playing well at the moment but we’re winning games. Hemel are good on their own field, they know how to play there.

“We’re looking for a complete performance to try and get the points. Last year we struggled against them down there. We know they are a tough side so we’ll be up for it.”

Newcastle are likely to be without prop Mark Mexico who has a hamstring injury and centre Jason Tali who picked up a leg injury.

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