Cambridge bid to thwart near rivals Bishop’s Stortford

PUBLISHED: 07:15 15 December 2017

Dan Lewis was on form with the boot for Cambridge against Esher.

Dan Lewis was on form with the boot for Cambridge against Esher.

Iliffe Media Ltd

Back-to-back wins is the target for Cambridge

Ross Stewart has set Cambridge the challenge of backing up their win over Esher when Bishop’s Stortford visit Volac Park this Saturday (December 16).

Ben Ibrahim’s try and eight points from the boot of Dan Lewis were enough to give Cambridge a 13-10 victory in south west London, their fifth success on the road this season.

“It was a really good win, but not our best performance,” said director of rugby Stewart. “But I think we have probably had too many good performances without the win.

“We didn’t want to go more than three games without a win. We did defend well the whole game, to be honest. They only had two opportunities in the second half and they came late on.

“We have to work out ways to break teams down. We just need a bit more patience in attack moving forward.

“We will certainly have to be better with the attacking bit as we know Bishop’s Stortford are very good with the ball in hand.”

Stortford have made a seamless transition to National League One after their promotion last season, and sit sixth in the table.

And Cambridge will be battling to overcome a home record that has only seen them win once at Volac Park in a year, the victory over Rosslyn Park in October.

“They are different to us as they have won some of their tight games,” said Stewart. “They have a great back line and work hard for each other and show what you can do without spending lots of money.

“Andy (Long, the director of rugby) has done a great job there and so it will be a challenge. They will come as favourites but hopefully that will be a bit of motivation for us.

“We know how good they are so will not underestimate them.

“It’s an odd one really as I don’t think there are many coaches or teams that have this issue at home.

“We’re trying not to focus on it too much but we know it’s there. The Rosslyn Park game shows we’ve got it in us.”

He added: “We ask the players what it is but we don’t know. It’s certainly not for the want of trying; perhaps it is trying too hard.

“The only thing we’re doing as coaches is not trying to put too much onus on it. We’re looking at the positives of playing away from home.”

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