National Two North: Sedgley aiming to end October top

If they fail to achieve that, the likes of Macclesfield, Caldy and Sandal will be ready to pounce as the top four is starting to move away from the rest of the pack.

Elsewhere, Chester and Stourbridge will be looking for away wins, while there is sure to be movement at the wrong end of the table with some intriguing looking fixtures taking place.

Leicester Lions v Sedgley Park

Sedgley Park will be looking to go into the first break of the season as league leaders of National Two North. Sedge have topped the table since week one and have suffered just a single defeat so far this season – that coming against Sandal  in their last away game.

This weekend they travel to Leicester Lions looking for their third away win of the campaign while the hosts will be hoping that they can re-find their early season form.

The Lions have won just one of their last four games after opening the year with three straight wins. Leicester are unbeaten at home this season, but will recall the 17-28 defeat they suffered to Sedge in this fixture last season.

Luctonians v Macclesfield

If Sedgley are to slip up this weekend in the Midlands, Macclesfield will be the first to swoop in to take top spot in this division. After an opening day defeat to Stourbridge, Macc have not looked back. Six straight wins has seen them firmly cement themselves in the top positions in the table and they will be looking to seal their third win on the road this Saturday.

Their opponents are bottom side the Luctonians who picked up their first win of the season four weeks ago against Huddersfield. Since then, three more defeats as seen them fall to last place in the division and their home for needs to improve quickly if they stand any chance of avoiding the drop.

Otley v Caldy

Caldy head into November as a side that have slipped under the radar in recent weeks. I am sure the men from Paton field will be quite happy with that as they sit third in the table after five straight wins.

This weekend will be their sixth away game of the season already, but four wins from their first five away matches is hugely impressive considering they won just four games on their travels in the whole of last season.

They make the trip to Cross Green to take on an Otley side who have won three of their last five matches after a stuttering start to the season.

Otley have won just two of their last nine home matches and will be hoping to bounce back from the defeat to Macclesfield last week. This corresponding fixture last season ended in a 26-26 draw when both sides had sights set on a top three finish.

Sandal v Sale FC

Many may have thought that at this early stage of the campaign Sale may have been higher in the table than Sandal based on the way National Three North ended last season.  Sale went up as champions after beating Sandal on the final day which meant Sandal had to get past Hinckley in the play-off for promotion. However, it’s the team from Yorkshire who have made the better start.

Six wins from their opening seven games is superb by the men from Milnthorpe Green who go into this contest with Sale having lost three of their last 43 league home matches – a remarkable stat.

Sale look to have found their feet in National Two North after three wins in their last five has taken them to the cusp of the top half. All three of those wins have been at home though as the Cheshire based side look to find their first win on the road this weekend.

Sale were the only side to beat Sandal at home last season with this fixture ending in a 13-30 win for Sale.

Harrogate v Chester

Sixth placed Chester travel to Harrogate this weekend looking to maintain their 100 per cent start to the season on the road. Normally, that would a record to boast about, but Chester’s home form has really let them down so far this campaign.

They have lost their last three at Hare Lane which has hampered their progress with their current away form just about keeping them in touch with the front runners.

Like Chester, Harrogate were expected to be towards the top of the table but they have made a far from perfect start to this campaign.

One win in their last four games leaves them in ninth place, but they did win their last home game against Huddersfield which ended a run of just two wins in nine at Ruddings Lane. Harrogate did beat Chester in this fixture 38-15 in November of last year.

Huddersfield v Stourbridge

With just one defeat in their last four games, Stourbridge are starting to click into gear after they recruited a number of new players in the summer.

Stour finished in a disappointing 10th place last season having being so close to promotion the season before and now their short term aims must be to keep building. Stour have won just six of their last 18 away games and were beaten 10-7 in this fixture last season.

As for the hosts Huddersfield, an inspired performance from Chris Bell guided them to a much needed win over Leicester Lions last weekend. They have beaten two of the top five clubs at home this season so once again they will be looking for a positive performance at Lockwood Park where they have won 13 of their last 19 games.

South Leicester v Broadstreet

South Leicester should be pleased with the start they have made since promotion from National Three Midlands. They lie 11th in the table as it stands with two wins to their name, but have picked up six vital bonus points which is the second highest in the league. South’s only home win came against Sale four weeks ago which was the last time they won a game.

Their Midlands counterparts Broadstreet, travel to Welford Road this Saturday having won just once so far this season. That win came against Preston Grasshoppers two weeks ago and they have lost all four of their away matches so far. The 2013/14 Midlands champions have won six of their last 19 games on their travels.

Tynedale v Preston Grasshoppers

Preston Grasshoppers travel north this weekend to take on Tynedale who are finding life tough in National Two after their first relegation in their history last season.

Both sides have not had the best of seasons to date with Tynedale having lost their last five games – the worst form in the league. Tyne have just one victory to their name and are one place above Preston in the table.

Tyne have played five of the current top six so far this season, but will be up against a Hoppers side that fought back brilliantly to save a draw against South Leicester last week.

Tyne won the last meeting between the two side in 2007-08, but Preston will surely fancy getting something from the North-East this Saturday.

National League Rugby