Sheffield Eagles are once again embracing the Friday feeling as they get set to host Bradford Bulls tonight in the first of eight Friday night fixtures at the OLP.
Director Mark Aston has always been a champion of a Friday fixture, and with the Bulls in town the Eagles are expecting another bumper crowd after pulling in a record number for the OLP in round one’s victory over Swinton.
“Friday night rugby has been well received before,” Aston said. “We think we'll get a few more down to watch us, we also feel we can get a few more in on the corporate side. We'll have a good crowd, and that follows on from a very positive turnout for the Swinton game. Liam Claffey (GM) is doing a marvellous job getting fans back, hopefully they'll be a few more against Bradford and we can maintain some of these high numbers. They'll be an extra few quid in the coffers, which helps.”
Aston will be without hooker James Davey who has tweaked a hamstring, whilst Brad Knowles faces a late fitness test after suffering a cracked rib in the victory over Swinton.
Youngsters Greg Burns and Blake Broadbent are pushing for inclusion, as the Eagles welcome a Bradford unit coached by ex-Eagles chief John Kear.
The Bulls, also unbeaten, could give a debut to Toronto loanee Olsi Krasniqi who has joined on a one month loan, whilst they are expected to include former Eagles Dane Chisholm and Elliot Minchella amongst their ranks.
“We are coming in off the back of two wins, so are they,” Aston added.
“The Bulls are back in town and they are making noises about being in the top three this year. They are perhaps not the Bulls that everybody remembers, but they are coming with a belief that they can beat anyone in this competition.
“This game is another massive one. There will be a big crowd with Bradford in town, and then we have Widnes away to follow. There are some really tough games coming up, but we are not worried about them, we are looking forward to them.”