Titans hope for fifth time lucky at Lane

Clearing the Rotherham Titans pitch on February 12
Clearing the Rotherham Titans pitch on February 12
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Rotherham’s game against Cornish Pirates, which has been postponed four times because of the freezing weather, is at long last expected to be played this afternoon at Clifton Lane, kick off 2pm.

The Titans’ ground at Clifton Lane has thawed because of last night’s and today’s milder weather, and following a pitch inspection by a referee yesterday morning, Cornish Pirates were advised they could travel to Rotherham.

Although there will be another inspection before kick off today, it seems certain that the game will go ahead.

Reports yesterday suggested that Clifton Lane was 75 per cent playable with only the odd patch that was still frozen.

Although the Titans, sixth in the Championship, have not played for a fortnight and may be ring rusty, coach Andre Bester has made sure that his first team squad have been fully active.

His players have been training on the all-weather pitch at the Thomas Rotherham College in the town and have continued to use the gym regularly at the Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield.

Assuming that Pirates stick to their published squad, they will be without two of their major match winners; winger David Doherty (13 Championship tries) who does not make the starting line-up along with full back Rob Cook, the third highest points’ scorer in the league.

However, Bester knows full well that Pirates have a large first team squad and remain serious contenders to win the Championship play-offs.

The team which Bester has selected is more or less considered to be the Titans’ strongest, but their chances will be weakened by the expected absence of top try scorer, Irish flanker Robin Copeland, who is not fully recovered from a flu bug.