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Skipper Vincent urged to carry on playing
8:04am Thursday 14th March 2013 in Sport
Ilkley’s rugby players will use a gap in the fixture list this weekend to rest up and finish the season on a high.
There is no fixture for the Dalesmen, who leapfrogged Wath into third on Saturday after a comfortable 30-8 win against a hapless Barnsley side now seemingly con- signed to relegation.
Coach Rhys Morgan was delighted by such an emphatic win in difficult circumstances.
“We had to have a massive reshuffle in the backs, and you never know how that’s going to pan out, especially after the disappointment against York the week before,” he said.
“A few of the boys had a bit of a point to prove, which helps. It was a good win.”
Stalwart captain Stuart Vincent, plagued by injury all season, got through 80 minutes and touched down for a try as he reverted to the wing, and Morgan is urging his skipper to put this season’s frustrations behind him and play on.
“It has been tough for Vinny, and I was pleased for him. I was gobsmacked that he got through the full 80 after going off after 20 minutes against York, and it’s a measure of his commitment to the team that he is even still playing. A lot of blokes would have hung their boots up for the season a long time ago.”
“Sometimes he talks about maybe not continuing beyond this season, but I think he owes it to himself to finish with a good, clear season of no injuries.”
The break will be invaluable for players like Vincent as Ilkley re-group to hurl themselves at the promotion places one last time.
“It’s worth hanging on in there,” Morgan said, “We’d never forgive ourselves if Huddersfield slipped up and we weren’t able to take advantage. They’ve got a really tough run-in compared to ours, so you never know, it could be a real humdinger against them on the last day of the season.”
“If someone had offered me top four at the beginning of the season I’d have snapped their arm off, and we can’t let that slip either.”
For the players, they will be putting their simply feet up and watching England’s own attempt at heroics in the Six Nations.
“The week off his its pros and cons. For players like Vinny it’s fantastic to have a couple of weeks rest, we’ve got a few like that, but in terms of selection headaches and carrying momentum into games it’s not so good. We’ll see.”