By Pippa Field
Head coach Alex Codling hailed a tremendous end to 2013 after Rosslyn Park produced a clinical performance to beat Richmond.
Three tries and 12 points from the boot of Scott Sneddon lifted Rosslyn Park to a 28-7 win on the road and enter the Christmas break second in SSE National League One.
Only Doncaster Knights sit above Codling’s side in the table and the boss is delighted to be able to look back on such a productive opening half of the season.
But despite his pride he knows there is little room for complacency in the New Year, with the likes of Esher, Fylde and Coventry snapping at their heels.
Rosslyn Park kick off 2014 by hosting Henley Hawks, who have proved to be a stumbling block for a number of big sides, and a trip to Blaydon – and Codling is already putting plans in place for January.
“I am delighted – I am absolutely delighted,” he said.
“The two games we lost, we lost one in the last minute and one in the last 15 minutes. The overall emotion is one of real pride.
“I have always said this – we just focus on ourselves. I know we have got a tough game coming up against Henley Hawks. They have beaten Doncaster this season so we need to make sure we pick up the baton straight away.
“Every game is crucial so it will be nice to start 2014 in the same way we have finished this year.”
The victory at Richmond was a satisfying way to end the calendar year and narrowly missing out on a bonus point was perhaps the only regret.
Edward Lewis-Pratt, Charles Broughton and Paul Mackey each ran in tries for the visitors, who did not concede a point until the hour mark.
And Codling is hoping his players take a huge amount of confidence into the break and out the other side.
“I think our energy and work ethic was phenomenal,” he added. “It is a tough league and they have put a huge amount of effort in and it is nice when it gets rewarded.
“It was an outstanding performance in very tough weather conditions – probably indicative of the work ethic that the boys have shown over the first half of the season.
“We don’t want to be sitting on a loss heading into the break so it was a fitting end to 2013.”
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