Rhod leads charge as Roosters clinch play-off home comforts

Rhod Howcroft scored four tries for St Ives Roosters. Picture: HELEN DRAKE

Rhod Howcroft scored four tries for St Ives Roosters. Picture: HELEN DRAKE - Credit: Archant

St Ives Roosters have secured home advantage in the East Premier League play-off semi-finals.

The reigning play-off champions are assured of a second-placed finish at worst ahead of their final outing of the regular season this Saturday when they host North Herts Crusaders at the St Ivo Outdoor Centre (2.30pm)

Roosters are level with table-toppers Bedford Tigers, but boast a vastly inferior points difference. Tigers also face bottom side Breckland in their final match this Saturday.

Rooster player-coach Paul Ashbridge said: “The first objective was to secure home advantage in the play-offs and we have done that.

“It would be ideal if we could grab top spot because the Grand Final is played at the home of the highest-finishing team.

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“All we can do is win our game and hope Bedford slip up.”

Roosters beat basement boys Breckland 54-34 in a high-scoring contest at the weekend despite having a host of influential players missing.

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Rhod Howcroft powered over for four tries and Cameron Howson claimed a hat-trick. Lewis Hall, Tommy Newman and Jack Blackley also crossed for scores.

Ashbridge added: “Breckland gave us lots to think about and were always in the game, but I was pleased with our boys.”

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