Crossing the line to pack a punch

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 18 November, 1995, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 November, 1995, 12:00am

POLICE player-coach Gary Cross has dropped himself for today's crucial game against Valley's Black Magic in a bid to add some more weight to the pack which had a wonderful game against the other Valley team - Red Devils - last Saturday.

Cross, who has bruised ribs, will be around in case Police need him if the going gets rough. His decision to stay on the touchline either reeks of confidence or is a tactical move following the outcome of their narrow 14-12 win over Valley Reds.

The Police pack, using their veteran front row, bulldozed Valley off the park last Saturday.

Obviously feeling that the forwards will again play a key role, Police have brought in former prop John Carser at blindside flanker and with the return of Charlie Strickland (at number eight), the pack will have more weight.

Mobility around the scrum will be provided by Tony Harker, but table-leaders Police will still miss the impish Cross. Steve Farrer comes in at lock for the unavailable Robbie McRobbie.

'The changes will give us a stronger pack,' said Cross, who will want to keep the game as tight as possible fearing Valley's counter-attacking prowess courtesy of full-back Vaughan Going.

The Police backline, which is unchanged, will have to watch out for strong Valley centre Jeff Piper and the boot of fly-half Pieter Schats if they are to provide support to their forwards.

Football Club Green will take on Valley Red in an earlier game on the same pitch at Happy Valley. Club have made a positional change, moving the speedy Martin Dawson from right wing to full-back - an indication that his talents have not been fully utilised so far this season.