South Shields looking to do double over Darlington

South Shields captain Clayton Fox in action in a recent game.
South Shields captain Clayton Fox in action in a recent game.

South Shields go into tomorrow’s game against Darlington at Grosvenor Road (3pm) knowing nothing but a win is acceptable.

The Hedworth Hall sponsored side beat Darlington back in November and will be looking for a repeat result on home soil.

Darlington find themselves in fifth place, while Shields currently sit 12th in the DN2, with Blyth and Seaton Carew the only teams below them.

Darlington are in decent form having won eight of their last 11 games since that shock 5-26 defeat at home to Shields, and they will fancy their chances against a home side who have only won three games since then.

The home side welcome back Matty Soroka from injury, while Kris Scott is also recalled to the first team to replace the injured Matty Stephenson, who tore a bicep and is likely to be out for nine months.

Louis Kellett is missing so that gives an opportunity to Matt Bengston to partner Dan McKay.

Captain Clayton Fox could be partnered in the back-row with Martin Bengston and Matty Chaganis. Todd Riley will start at No9, with Gary Bates at fly-half.

Liam Newall and Jonah McIntyre are in the frame to stand in for James Pocklington whose National Conference League season with Gateshead Storm starts tomorrow.

Shields know they must start securing some wins and valuable points otherwise they could see an immediate return to DN3.

With Blyth making the long trip to Whitby, it could be the perfect opportunity to move away from the relegation dogfight, with Blyth to play next weekend.

South Shields Mariners are also looking to secure a vital win when they travel to Consett RFC (Amethyst Park, DH8 6LU).