News from the Blues 25 feb

Macclesfield showed good resolve once again to battle to a narrow victory on Saturday against fellow relegation-strugglers Cambridge.

In freezing cold conditions, and a small threat of snow before the game, it was always going to be a scrappy fight between the two sides, as both teams felt the pressure of a must-win game.

After winning by just three points last week and by the same margin this week, the Blues have risen to the challenge and now set their sights on a fourth win in a row as they take on Tynedale.

One thing that has been a key component of our recent successful results is the improved reliability and strength of our forwards.

Only in the Ealing and Rosslyn Park games this year have we looked to be at a disadvantage when it came to set pieces, and with three forwards scoring against Cambridge, it is encouraging to see as new players have settled and joined an already powerful pack.

There are still several players missing from action with injuries: Alan Marsh, Billy Robinson, Ed Stobart and Chris Jones are some of those struggling for fitness, however Frankie Barker is set to return after being out for two weeks.

While Macclesfield have enjoyed a strong start to 2013, 12th place Tynedale have also shown they are no pushovers.

Their last result was a 38-34 victory at home against Rosslyn Park, who admittedly perform better at home are still a very difficult side to beat.

The Blues were able to travel to Tynedale and win back in October, the result there 27-21, and will be looking to capitalise on the home advantage as well as welcoming back several players from injury and loan.

There were only three matches played this weekend in the National League One due to them being postponed fixtures: Loughborough Students lost to Wharfedale 27-24, while Fylde travelled to Sedgley Park and beat them 59-20, scoring nine tries in the process.

The Lions game was postponed this weekend due to a frozen pitch, while vets also went without a game. The 3s and the 4s we both beaten, the former 35-5 against Fleetwood, as the 4s lost 14-6 against Bolton.

And finally, congratulations to Jack Sadler for being selected for England’s Under 18s North squad.


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#maccrugby

"We didn't deal with what they brought." "We caught the high balls in the 1st half, they did in the 2nd half. We won the breakdowns in the 1st half, they did in the 2nd. Game over." @SaintsRugby DOR Chris Boyd disappointed to go out in the quarter-finals. #HeinekenChallengeCup

"John's been really good for us, after the disappointment of the pro14 and not getting into the Ireland squad, he's really shown what he can do." @UlsterRugby's DOR Dan McFarland please with the resolve of his team, and praises Cooney and Stockdale. #HeinekenChallengeCup

Reliant, determined, triumphant @UlsterRugby advance to the @ERChallengeCup semi-final. An even match to start but Ulster muscled through in the crucial last 20 minutes. #HeinekenChallengeCup

test Twitter Media - Reliant, determined, triumphant @UlsterRugby advance to the @ERChallengeCup semi-final. 

An even match to start but Ulster muscled through in the crucial last 20 minutes.

#HeinekenChallengeCup https://t.co/JrnnNR4Ps4
test Twitter Media - Reliant, determined, triumphant @UlsterRugby advance to the @ERChallengeCup semi-final. 

An even match to start but Ulster muscled through in the crucial last 20 minutes.

#HeinekenChallengeCup https://t.co/JrnnNR4Ps4
test Twitter Media - Reliant, determined, triumphant @UlsterRugby advance to the @ERChallengeCup semi-final. 

An even match to start but Ulster muscled through in the crucial last 20 minutes.

#HeinekenChallengeCup https://t.co/JrnnNR4Ps4
test Twitter Media - Reliant, determined, triumphant @UlsterRugby advance to the @ERChallengeCup semi-final. 

An even match to start but Ulster muscled through in the crucial last 20 minutes.

#HeinekenChallengeCup https://t.co/JrnnNR4Ps4

Tamagotchis, The Simpsons and this lot tearing it up 🔥

Tommy Freeman off like a rocket! Great pick by Harrison from the back of the @SaintsRugby ruck to set up Mitchel, to set off Freeman. #HeinekenChallengeCup

Look at the pack power from @UlsterRugby! The determined drive, through the Saints, and over the line for a Rob Herring try. #HeinekenChallengeCup

REPORT - Leinster dump European holders Exeter out 🏉🏆 Leinster ☘️ recovered from 14-0 behind to secure a superb 34-22 quarter-final win at the home of defending European champions Exeter 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿👇

"We went into meltdown mode a little bit too early. "If we want to become a really good side and consistent in Europe, we must learn from today." @ExeterChiefs DoR Rob Baxter credits Leinster following a thrilling European encounter. #HeinekenChampionsCup

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