Unbeaten Hull Kingston Rovers travel to Heywood Road this afternoon (3pm kick off) looking to make it nine league wins on the spin.
On paper this game should be a stroll in the sunshine for the Robins, Swinton have only managed one league win all season (against fellow strugglers Dewsbury), but by and large have been competitive in their other league games this year, running the likes of Toulouse, Halifax, Sheffield and Bradford close.
This said Rovers are a different proposition and are in truth head and shoulders above anything the Lions have encountered this year. Lions coach John Duffy said his lads are looking to test themselves against the best in the division, and that’s exactly what they will get is a massive test, even against a Robins side that will be missing some important players. Danger men Thomas Minns and Andrew Heffernan will sit out this match due to concussion concerns, as will Chris Clarkson and Danny Addy with knee problems and speedster Kieren Moss with a bruised heel.
Therefore with some senior players sitting it out, Tim Sheens will give Zach Dockar-Clay is red and white bow and will introduce some of the Robins fledglings to first team action for the first time this season. Will Oakes, Joe Cator, ex FC youngster Brad Clavering and George Milton earn a call up to Sheens’ 19 man squad.
Whoever makes the cut and takes the field, Sheens will demand an 80 minute performance and expect nothing less then a win, and at this busy period of the year and with injuries mounting that is all that counts, the win.
With some big fixtures against better quality opposition to come Sheens will be happy to come away from Greater Manchester with the 2 points and no new injury concerns. Swinton will look to give the Robins a fright but the quality of the squad even without the injured players should be enough to keep Sheens happy going into Easter, with big games coming in quick succession.
If the Robins are winning comfortably with 20 minutes to go, Sheens may even give his experienced stars such as Lunt, Blair and Scruton a rest, with the extensive Easter period only days away.