As Rotherham Titans prepare for their biggest home match in at least 10 years-tomorrow’s second leg against Bristol in the promotion play-offs at Abbeydale-they have been boosted by the return of three players from injury.
Second row forward Dan Sanderson(knee), flanker Ali Birch(ankle) and hooker Ben Sowrey(thumb) are included in the squad to confront Bristol who start at Abbeydale with a narrow lead of three points.
All three missed the first leg at the Memorial Stadium last Saturday when Bristol won by only 17-14.
“ They’ve looked sharp in training and are fit enough which is a big bonus for us,” explained coach Lee Blackett who also announced the signing of a new Scottish second row, Perry Parker, from Edinburgh who has been on loan to Welsh side Ospreys.
“Regarding Bristol, the opening 20 minutes are going to be crucial for us. We expect a reaction from them. We must front up, our scrum, I am sure, will be better than at Bristol and we have to keep our discipline.
“We know that Bristol are favourites and they go on about beating us four times this season. But we have a lot more self-belief going into the second leg and if we get a good start, then it is game on.
“If we get a penalty early on, it’s back to level pegging and we then have a good chance.
“ The match at Abbeydale is like a one-off cup final and both sides will give 100 per cent in a do-or-die game,” said Blackett.
Rotherham will announce their starting line-up later today, but forwards Josh Thomas-Brown and Ed Williamson who received costly yellow cards at Bristol will be included in the squad.
While the game is live on Sky(6.05 pm),a crowd of more than 3,000 is expected.
Rotherham Titans from: Scanlon, Broadley, Keating, Davies, Roberts, Socino, Gill, Murphy, Law, Mulchrone, White, Williams, Hislop, Cruse, Sowrey, Tampin, Quigley, Sanderson, Holmes, Thomas-Brown, Williamson, Rieder, Preece, Birch, Morris, To’oala.