TIM Doig is expecting his ever-improving Chester side to attack Saturday’s derby at Birkenhead Park with “fire and brimstone”.
The Hare Lane chief knows the significance of the encounter at Upper Park (3pm) as it is the first time the teams have met since last year’s dramatic EDF Intermediate Cup final at Twickenham.
Both Chester and Birkenhead have won twice and lost once so far in National Division Three (North) and with Park having home advantage, Doig is under no illusions how tough a game it will be.
“We go back a long way,” he said. “It is going to need a strong referee as we are expecting a real battle. It is the local derby and it will be real fire and brimstone.
“They will want to prove that they are the better team and I am sure they will still have a chip on their shoulder after we beat them at Twickenham.”
Chester head to the Wirral brimming with confidence following their impressive 28-18 home victory over previously- unbeaten Beverley on Saturday.
The game was held up for 15 minutes when a visiting winger was knocked unconscious in a tackle, which came shortly after they had lost their player- coach through injury.
Once the action restarted it was the hosts who were the more clinical and fly-half Rhys Hayes stole the show with a hat-trick of tries and a penalty. Wingers Marcus Lyon and Gareth Coy also touched down.
Doig, who expects to be at full strength on Saturday, said: “It was a tough game between two sides who wanted to play rugby. It was just a case that we scored more tries than they did.
“The forwards gained parity and I thought our back-row was outstanding, especially Andy Moore who was my man of the match, which was actually awarded to Joe Sproston for his display.”
Christleton went down 55-10 at home to Ruskin Park in Miller Homes League Division Four (West) on Saturday.
The hosts were very much in the game at the break after Dave Taylor’s penalty ensured they started the second half trailing by just eight points. They collapsed after the restart, though, and a try from Graham Noble that was converted by Taylor proved to be nothing more than a consolation.
Debutants Graeme Beattie, John Driver and Chris Hayes impressed for Christleton, who entertain Chester 3rds on Saturday (3pm).