NRC Preview: Rochdale v London

Wayne English (eye) is a major doubt for Rochdale Hornets, who will also check on other members of their squad before coach Ian Talbot determines his team to face London Skolars.

Hornets have only one win from their three Northern Rail Cup fixtures this year after last week’s 30-16 defeat against North Wales Crusaders.

Talbot said: “Our completion rate was a big factor, but we also didn’t get our fair share of the calls.”

Now Talbot is focused on London, who have a 100 per cent record this season having won against Hemel, Gloucestershire All Golds and South Wales Scorpions.

Talbot said: “There’s been some massive improvements in the quality of rugby played by the London sides over recent years, and they’ll be a big test for us.

“It’s an opportunity for me to play one or two players who haven’t played yet, but I also need to find the happy balance because we want to go into the league with a win behind us.”

Jordan Case could come back into contention for Rochdale, while Skolars coach Joe Mbu is preparing his side for a fierce test.

Mbu said: “We’ll need to raise our game. Hopefully we’ll go there and do ourselves justice, because for the last two years our trips to Rochdale have not been easy.”

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