SHEFFIELD EAGLES: Only the best will do for Mark Aston

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SHEFFIELD Eagles coach Mark Aston will hammer home the message that the ‘A team’ must turn up when they face Halifax in the semi-final of the Northern Rail Cup.

Aston was happy to get a win in the league game at Swinton Lions but warns there can’t be a repeat of that patchy performance.

“That is Sheffield Eagles, people talk abut the ‘A team’ and the ‘B team’, we were the A team then the B team at Swinton – it’s that inconsistency,” he said.

“We do a lot of good stuff and then drop our guard but credit to Swinton they made it tough.

“We were relieved at the end to get out of the game with a win but we have to be a bit better. We have it in us to do an 80-minute performance but we’re not there yet.”

The 32-24 win at Swinton lifted the Eagles into fourth place in the Championship and they go into the semi-final at Don Valley Stadium, on Friday on the back of three wins.

Halifax have to regroup after they were hit by a double whammy with Featherstone Rovers winning at the Shay and taking over top spot in the league.

Aston said: “Halifax isn’t a worry. I know where we are at and if the players can’t get themselves up for a semi-final when can they? Friday night’s game is the easy one – the hard one was at Swinton.

“Defensively we did a lot of good stuff but individuals did knock off at the wrong time. There were two inception tries, you can’t legislate for that. We’ll fine tune a few things – and that’s my job.”

A worry for Aston is half-back Dominic Brambani who limped off in the second half with a dead leg.