Vale coach ready for “cracking derby” against Kirkby Lonsdale

Smiling Nick Royle scores his hat-trick against Wilmslow.
Smiling Nick Royle scores his hat-trick against Wilmslow.
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Vale of Lune head coach Paul Woodward is ready for a “cracking derby” at Kirkby Lonsdale on Saturday.

The Powderhouse Lane side are one place and four points above their near rivals in North One West after a first win in seven over Wilmslow last time out.

Paul Woodward

Paul Woodward

And with Kirkby completing the double over Kendal on Saturday, Woodward is expecting a titanic tussle at Underley Park.

The coach said: “It’s a big one.

“It’s a local derby with a lot of history attached, which I’ve been catching up on.

“And it’s getting tighter in the league too with and the goal for ourselves, Kendal and Kirkby Lonsdale is to finish above the other two.

“Obviously we needed to get back to winning ways and you could feel in the dressing room afterward that the lads were pleased that their efforts had resulted in a win, not a draw.

“It means we’re going into a big game on a positive and with Kirkby beating Kendal too it’s going to be a cracking derby.”

The 29-27 victory over Wilmslow, Vale’s first since November 23, came despite them trailing 15-0 at one point.

Woodward said: “Having been behind we did really well to come back until the last 10 minutes when we got someone sin binned.

“It’s good that we won in those kind of conditions. I think the defeat at Kendal helped us a lot and we’ll have to deal with something similar again on Saturday.”

It was a win inspired by yet another hat-trick from Nick Royle who is closing in on the Vale record for tries in a season. 
Woodward said: “He’s obviously come from a very good pedigree and if he steers clear of injury he’ll pass his old coach at Fylde, Mark Nelson’s, record.

“But he gives you more that the tries.

“It’s good having him around because from the sidelines you can hear him talking on the pitch and in such a young side it’s good to have that experience.”