Knights look to continue Tetley’s Challenge Cup crusade
By Liam Williams
Normanton Knights face their biggest test of the year when they take on the professionals of Workington Town in a Tetley’s Challenge Cup third round tie at the Big Fellas Stadium, Featherstone on Saturday (2.00pm).
The Knights overcame Lock Lane and the Royal Air Force in the first two rounds and whilst Normanton’s player-coach Paul Seal knows the odds are heavily stacked against them, the former Halifax loose forward thinks his National Conference League Division One team will rise to the challenge.
“It’s an exciting occasion for everyone involved with the club,” said Seal. “The players are really looking forward to it. There’s no pressure on us to win the game so it’s just about us going out there, enjoying the day and taking what we can from it.
“It will be a good experience. The younger lads have not played at this level before so it’ll be interesting for them.
“I have been on the other side when you’re expected to win and you can feel that pressure, not just to perform but to win – and win by a lot of points – so it might be something we can capitalise on.
“We might not be as good technically but we will have enthusiasm on our side. It’s not something we get to do often and a community side playing a Championship team is something to relish, so hopefully that can give us a bit of an edge, too.
“We will watch a DVD on Workington, picking bits out of that to see if there is anything we can look to exploit.”
Normanton will make the short trip to Featherstone to play at the Big Fellas Stadium for the tie and Seal believes his side will have to be quick to settle in less familiar surroundings.
“We are going to have to adapt to it pretty quickly,” he said. “It is not like the grounds we play at week in and week out. If anything it could work in Workington’s favour as they have probably played there more than we have.
“Things like the way the ground and the pitch are, we will have to adjust to it, but we are looking forward to it.
“We’ll make a day of it, for the supporters if nothing else. We are playing at a big ground in the third round of the Challenge Cup – these occasions don’t come too often.”
The Tetley’s Challenge Cup third round tie between Normanton Knights and Workington Town will take place at the Big Fellas Stadium on Saturday March 15 (2.00pm). Tickets are priced at £10 for adults and £5 for concessions.
Tickets for the 2014 Tetley’s Challenge Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday August 23 cost from as little as £22 and can be purchased by calling the RFL Ticket Office on 0844 856 113 or by visiting www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk.