Colchester coach Johnston wants to send out a 'massive statement'

COLCHESTER RFC coach Danny Johnston wants to send out a ‘massive statement’ to their rivals.

The Mill Road side sit in fourth place in London league division one north and have two huge games ahead of them in the run up to Christmas.

After dispatching Tabard, from the lower reaches of the division, 40-17 last weekend Colchester have an altogether different prospect today.

They entertain the team directly above them in the table, Chingford, and will be looking to drag them down.

The following weekend they travel to leaders Westcliff and these two games could go a long way to defining Colchester’s season.

Johnston said: “ We have two big games coming up now before Christmas.

“They are different teams who will present different challenges and have capable players.

“The boys are excited about what’s coming up and we’re looking forward to it.

“It’s about us having the same character and attitude as we showed against Tabard, for 80 minutes.

“We’re on 44 points, Chingford and Eton Manor are on 47 and Westcliff are on 48.”

Johnston knows the importance of thses two games and wants his side to perform to their best.

He added: “In games like these, every win is effectively a double win.

“If a team wins then it counts for eight points minimum, because it’s come against a team around them.

“I don’t want to get too bogged down with results though – we have to focus on our performance.

“If you’re happy with the performance, then the result tends to look after itself.

“It will send out a massive statement on Saturday if we win but the performance has to be good.”

In London league division two north east, Braintree travel to Enfield Ignatians.

The Black and Ambers secured a confidence-boosting 44-21 win against Stowmarket last weekend.

Today they will be looking to continue their winning ways against the team directley above them in the table and on the same 25 points.

Eastern Counties League division one throws up a big local derby today when Harwich and Dovercourt entertain Mersea Island.

The Islanders will be looking to complete the league double over their hosts and will be hoping to bounce back after drawing 22-22 with West Norfolk.

A game the Islanders knew was there for the taking.

Mersea skipper Jon Williams, however, knows it will be a tough game.

He said: “Hopefully we can build from last weekend’s draw, it was a good performance but some our handling let us down.

“If we held on to the ball a bit more then we could have taken the win.

“We beat Harwich early in the season, however, they have a few new players and have been growing in confidence over recent weeks.

“They have good execution of the ball and it is going to be a tough game.

“But we tend to get stronger in the second half of the season.

“Hopefully we can now go from strength to strength.”

Harwich beat Broadlands 27-3 last weekend and will take to the pitch full of confidence.

Harwich captain Joe Francis said: “We will now be looking to build on this performance and take it forward and that will happen with victory over Mersea.

“It’s time now for the ball to bounce in our favour, for us to start to dictate and dominate and we will do that if we stick to our structure and our game plan.

“Playing to the game plan works.

“When we play with structure and in the right areas of the field we are unstoppable.”

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