Got to agree that making the top 5 is a long shot.
Let's look at the positives.
One of our better players is back in Callum Phillips. A lot of talk about where he should play, is this an opportunity to see if Doran and Phillips can be our future at 6&7?
Because if we are aiming to get up to the Championship by the time it happens Carl Forber will be towards or at the latter stage of a good career. So an opportunity to look to the future in that area ? This is not a reflection on Carl's performance just a inevitable part of pro sport.
Scholey got minutes in the tank.Great to see him back.
Tom Curwen will be available,hope he enjoyed the rest as he's had to some big minutes as a young prop in his first Pro season.
Kris Coward and Phil Joseph will have another 2 weeks recovery time. Big men who we've missed. Hopefully 1 will be back by the start of the 8s.
With some more pack men becoming available that should hopefully see Davies back to centre now Rasool heads back to Warrington. I think his loan has finished now.
We have Toronto & Haven at home so potentially a couple of decent crowds. Hopefully Haven will bring a few more through as they'll be expecting to win and we get a good gate and income.
What we need to achieve in the 8s is a level of performance that we will show the fan base that we are heading in the right direction and that we will be pushing hard at the top end of the league next season.
4 tough away games but we need to perform and I wouldn't call it raising our game ,we need to prove that this side is at that level.
Next season the top end of the league will be hotly contested, most likely 1 of Barrow or Haven won't go up,+ 2 teams coming down will be strong most likely Bradford being 1 of them and Doncaster,York, Keighley, Newcastle , ourselves....it's not going to be easy to get out of this division.
But from people saying this was the black hole of rugby it's far from it in my opinion, obviously on a wider scale there are issues relating to the best way of developing the Coventry's,the Oxfords ,Hemel as the scores are not a good reflection on the RL but I'm not sure what the alternatives are.
Those teams need to have a pathway and there's no point in them playing each other every week as they'll never know what they need to improve on to get up to the levels required.
But at least we're in the top 8 and have some good games to look forward to and maybe we can throw a spanner in Havens promotion bid....