Plymouth Albion are at Brickfields today (Saturday, December 16) for their final home fixture of 2017 against Old Albanian RFC (KO 3pm).
Albion will be keen to get back to business after last week’s National League One game against Birmingham Moseley was postponed due to poor weather conditions.
Albion fly half Dan Mugford said: “There was a bit of disappointment about the game being cancelled. No one really wants that but obviously the snow was bad enough to cancel the game.
“However, we had a nice weekend to refresh ourselves and we’re looking forward to this Saturday.”
The 26-year-old says the team are high on confidence following their win earlier this month over Hull Ionions: “I think it was one of our best performances of the season and it seemed to all come together, so hopefully we can continue that at the weekend.”
Following the Hull game, when he scored two tries and two conversions, Mugford was named by NCA Rugby (The National Clubs Association) as the National League One player of the week.
The accolade meant a great deal to the popular fly half: “It was really nice. I managed to get over for a couple of tries and hopefully controlled the game pretty well. Everyone put in a really good performance which, as a fly half, inevitably makes your role a lot easier and makes you look a bit better if anything! I managed to hang out on the wing and get myself a couple of tries.”
Almost a year to the day since Albion last lost at Brickfields – against eventual league champions Hartpury College 24-27 – Mugford admits preserving the home record is a real focus: “It is a really big one. We want this to be a fortress and we want the city to be behind us. Obviously we go into every game wanting to win, but especially home games, and to have that backing from the city and the supporters here is fantastic and long may it continue.”
Despite their league position, the former Sale Shark is not underestimating Old Albanian: “No one is going to be a pushover, and these are the games you need to be really careful of as they will be fighting for everything. No doubt they will come out firing and we need to be on our mettle to make sure we stick to our processes and put the game away.”
The Hertfordshire outfit beat Darlington earlier this season and held Coventry to a 19-21 scoreline and Mugford says they are a capable side: “That shows exactly what they can do. Just because they are second from bottom, that doesn’t really mean anything. We need to make sure our team get everything right and then hopefully come out with the victory at the end.”
Kieran Hallett has made no changes to the team selected for the Moseley game and Mugford agrees with his head coach’s selection: “I think that’s a good call from the gaffer and the right thing for the boys. Everyone is behind it.”
As it is the team’s last home game for 2017, the players are hoping for a good crowd: “We want to be supported in the city and to do good things for Plymouth and the more people can come through the gate, the better for our performance on the field.
“We want to build something quite special here so please come along! Hopefully we can put on a good show.”
Plymouth Albion team to face Old Albanian RFC at Brickfields on Saturday, December 16 (KO 3pm).
15 Matt Shepherd, 14 Dean Squire, 13 Tom Hendrickson, 12 Harvey Skinner, 11 Setareki Raumakita, 10 Dan Mugford, 9 Cameron Setter, 1 Luke Chapman, 2 Jamie Salter, 3 Marcus Street, 4 Sean Lonsdale, 5 Dan Swain, 6 George Mills, 7 Sam Daly, 8 Eoghan Grace (Captain)
16 Dan Pullinger, 17 Rupert Freestone, 18, John Kelly, 19 Joe Snow, 20 Jordan Gott