Right royal win is needed at Owlerton

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TIGERS’ boss Eric Boocock is demanding a solid all-round team effort in tonight’s Knockout Cup first leg tie with Edinburgh Monarchs at Owlerton (7.45pm)

Boocock wants to see a good first leg lead from the meeting to take up to Armadale for the return tomorrow. Tigers dumped the Monarchs out of last year’s play-off semis with a two-point aggregate victory, winning 61-31 in a stunning second leg at Owlerton. That went a long way towards eradicating a miserable record in KO competitions against the Armadale men, who tonight and tomorrow chase a third win in five seasons against the Tigers in the cup.

“We’ve got a job on our hands,” said Bocoock. “Even without Ryan Fisher this season, Edinburgh are a tough side; they never seem to know when to give up.

“I can’t see where they’ve got a weak link and the worrying thing is that they can do the job on the big tracks as well as the little ones. But we pulled off that play-off win last year against all the odds and we can do it again this time around. Meetings like that one last year don’t come around very often and while we were at the top of our game, they did have some bad luck. Edinburgh will want to take some revenge for that one.

“But we don’t want to lose to them again in the cup either. We’ll have to build up a big lead tonight and then defend it with our lives when we go up there.”

Boocock is relatively happy with the way things are shaping up at Owlerton after a promising start to the campaign.

He said: “It’s so far, so good but we aren’t as consistent as I thought we would be. Our heat leaders are shaping up well and there’s plenty of promise throughout the team.”