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Coach urges Ilkley players to enjoy their rugby
Ilkley’s players should have plenty to smile about after climbing to second in Yorkshire Division One, but now they are being encouraged to enjoy their rugby more.
Coach Rhys Morgan believes his squad are putting themselves under unnecessary pressure.
Now he is calling on them to lighten up as they prepare to take on Old Brodleians at Stacks Field on Saturday.
Morgan said: “The players need to enjoy their success. They seem to be putting themselves under too much pressure to perform.
“They appear to be getting down when they don’t win by big scores, but the important thing is that they are winning.
“We may not be playing as well as we can, but if you cannot enjoy your rugby when you are second in the league, when can you enjoy yourself?
“There have been plenty of times in the past when we have had bad run and that creates its own pressure. We have to enjoy the good times while they are here. As a coach I want to encourage my players to play well. I try not to put pressure on them, so I don’t want them to be hard on themselves.”
Morgan added: “I know there may be times when I have to make a tough call and leave somebody out, but I will give them the chance to find their form in the second team and come back.”
Ilkley will be boosted by the return of Ollie Renton, Nathan Bland, and Mike Cachia on Saturday, but there is an injury doubt over Craig Barker.
He switched to stand off in Cachia’s absence for the 31-26 win at Knottingley and injured a knee.
Ilkley made things hard for themselves in the second half after giving away a stream of penalties and having two players sin binned.
“We have to work on cutting out the penalties and yellow cards because they are hurting us, “ said Morgan.