MARTIN Haag has challenged his players to finish 2012
with a bang against Midlands rivals Moseley by producing the sort
of form that put Doncaster to the sword last month.
RUN AWAY: Tim
Streather returns to the side as Nottingham aim to get back to
their best before Christmas. PIC: Alison Bowden.
While Nottingham have breathed new life into their British and
Irish Cup campaign with back-to-back bonus point wins over Melrose,
it is the fashion in which the Green and Whites accounted for the
Knights that Haag wants to see replicated at Meadow Lane on Sunday
"We had two good wins against Melrose but we want to go out
against Moseley in the same vein as we finished the game against
Doncaster, which is the standard we set ourselves," Haag said.
"There is a change of focus coming from the B & I Cup and we
want to return to our Championship form."
Getting into the festive spirit of things for a match labeled
the Family Christmas, Haag is exhausting every avenue to get what
he wants by popping a note to Santa Claus.
"This is the last game before Christmas, so five points would be
a great present for us," Haag said.
As a side that has averaged more than 54 points from its past
five wins at home, confidence is at an all-time high at Meadow
"Winning is a good habit and breeds a good atmosphere," Haag
"Self belief is a very important thing and we are playing with
it at the moment.
"The amount of points that we have been scoring doesn't surprise
me because there is a good mixture coming from both backs and
forward and coming from a lot of different areas."
Centre Tim Streather's inclusion in the midfield is one of seven
changes made to the side that beat Melrose 32-20 at The Greenyards
Joe Munro slots in alongside Streather and Rhys Crane is named
on the wing after being a late withdrawal against the Scottish
outfit after straining his calf in the pre-game warm-up.
The half-back combination of former young New Zealand
representative Sean Romans and Japan international James Arlidge is
reunited after two weeks of mixing and matching during the Cup
In the pack, Michael Holford comes in ahead of Ryan Bower at
tighthead and flanker Rupert Cooper reclaims his place at blindside
with Tom Calladine moved to the bench.
Hooker Shaun Malton makes his first Championship start since
joining the East Midlands club last month, having performed
strongly in the front row in both home and away Cup ties against
Nottingham's Family Christmas will be a festive event at
Meadow Lane with St. Nicholas taking centre stage in the Green and
Whites Market Place on a sleigh parked in Santa's grotto. Children
can get a photo with Santa pre-match.
To add to the occasion, festive food and drink will be on offer,
including; guest real ale, turkey & cranberry rolls, mince pies
and mulled wine. To purchase match tickets call Nottingham Rugby on
0115 907 0070.
Nottingham Rugby team to face Moseley on Sunday,
December 23 at Meadow Lane Stadium (3pm kick-off): 15
David Jackson 14 Alex Lewington 13 Tim Streather 12 Joe Munro 11
Rhys Crane 10 James Arlidge 9 Sean Romans 1 Matt Parr 2 Shaun
Malton 3 Michael Holford 4 Dan Montagu 5 Nic Rouse 6 Rupert Cooper
7 Brent Wilson (c) 8 Alex Shaw.
Replacements from:16 Jimmy Stevens 17 Ryan
Bower 18 Joe Quinn 19 Tom Calladine 20 Finlay Barnham 21 Joe Cobden
22 Andy Forsyth.