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Home comforts for Pershore RFC in big Midlands final
2:00pm Thursday 13th March 2014 in Sport
PERSHORE can enjoy the rare luxury of a match at headquarters against Stewarts and Lloyds in the RFU Senior Vase Midlands final on Saturday (3pm).
The Wyre Piddle-based club were hit hard by flooding and have played just one match at home since Christmas.
But they proved their resilience by moving to within two games of a Twickenham final appearance.
Pershore switched their last-four win over West Bridgford to Kidderminster but returned home on March 1 for a Midlands Three West (South) clash and now host the Corby outfit for a place in the national semi-finals.
“There are still one or two damp areas but the pitch is fine and we are hoping, with the forecast of warmer weather, it will dry out further,” said Pershore backs coach Tommy Hayes.
“The weather has disrupted our entire season. The big issue has been continuity.
"When we have managed consecutive matches, we have played good rugby. The big problem has been playing two matches in a row.”
Training has also been an issue with the floods forcing Pershore to find other facilities in and around the town to keep their players sharp.
“We’ve been to tennis courts and car parks, you name it we’ve been there,” Hayes said.
“We’ve had to be creative in our training regime. It’s not been easy but the players have responded well.”
Pershore intend to use the cup match as a homecoming celebration, which will involve all sections of the club and former players.
“We see the final not just as a big day for the first team but also as an opportunity for all the different sections in the club to come together and enjoy the occasion,” Hayes continued.
“We intend to make the most of the experience and we are going to invite along some of the old faces who perhaps haven’t been down to the club so much in recent years to get them involved again.”
But a day of celebration will also be tinged with sadness following the death of their chairman Robert ‘Spud’ Willson-Taylor from cancer.
“We will be thinking about Spuddy and the memories of what he gave to the club over many years will be a motivating factor for us,” Hayes added.
“It’s a great shame he is no longer with us because he put so much of his time and energy into the club over many years.”