Guernsey duo in race against time
RAIDERS face an anxious wait to see if two of their star backs will be fit for the huge top-of-the-table clash with Barnes in 11 days.
In overcoming a potential banana skin by beating Shelford 22-21 away on Saturday, crucially with the four-try bonus point, the London & South-East leaders lost Dan Hill, Malcolm Barnes and Luke Jones to injury in a bruising encounter.
Flanker Hill is set for a spell on the sidelines due to the ankle problem he picked up early on, while the other two were due to be assessed last night.
‘Malcolm hyper-extended his elbow and at the moment is in a lot of pain, but we are hoping he is going to be back – I’d currently rate him at 50-50,’ said Guernsey coach Jordan Reynolds.
‘Luke Jones was hit high in the tackle that led to our penalty try and also damaged his ankle at the same time, so it’s a race against time for him too.’
With a host of new faces in the Shelford ranks compared to when Raiders beat them convincingly in November, Reynolds revealed it was ‘a lot tougher’ this time around.
A purple patch at the start of the second half when they scored three tries gave Guernsey the cushion they needed for victory, though, despite a late onslaught from the home side.
‘We gained the five points, which I am ecstatic about because it is really a toss of the coin whether we deserved the bonus and it was one of those games that could have changed our season completely,’ Reynolds said.
‘But, to be fair to the boys, if you are winning 13 games in row – which is some achievement – they can’t all be Mona Lisas, there are going to be a couple of finger paintings in there.’
- More in Tuesday's Guernsey Press.