Kingstone Press League 1 Preview: London Skolars v Oxford

Jermaine Coleman, the London Skolars coach, is hoping to build on last week’s win at University of Gloucestershire All Golds.

“I was very happy with the result on Saturday,” he said. “For the first time we made them defend as much as we’d been doing and fortunately we were able to take the opportunities when they were defending to score points.

“We were super disappointed with our first half performance when we played Oxford away and a little bit disappointed with the refereeing in the second half, I’m sure Tim (Rumford) will agree with me on that.

“We owe it to ourselves to put that right and make sure we back up Saturday’s performance. We owe it to ourselves to put in a performance at home and get a win – it’s been a long time coming since Skolars have had a win at home. That’s very much the aim this weekend.”

Oxford had their chances in the defeat to Barrow last week according to coach Tim Rumford.

“We started the game really brightly and took the lead,” he said.

“We looked confident and were the better team for spells of the game. I think we conceded two tries from Barrow’s kicks and unfortunately one from a kick of our own. The key for us is getting to the closing stages of a game with a chance of winning.

“I watched Skolars’ game against Gloucester and I thought they were really disciplined. They are a big side across the board and there’s a fair bit of athleticism about them.

“They are certainly a changed team from the last time we played them, but if we can replicate certain areas of that Barrow game then we will fancy our chances. We’re going to have to complete at a high percentage and might have to get into an arm wrestle given the small pitch and the physical nature of the opposition.

“We’ll have to prepare for that dogfight and be disciplined enough to stay in it and take our chances.”

Skipper Craig Cook is doubtful for this week.

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