Diss Rugby Club head coach Roger Coombs has conceded his side’s play-off hopes are all but over ahead of their trip to rivals Holt tomorrow (3pm).
With two games of the regular season left to go, Diss are five points adrift of second place Sudbury, who occupy the sole play-off spot in the London League Division Two North East table.
A bonus point win for Sudbury at Norwich this weekend will effectively secure them a top two finish, as Diss have a vastly inferior points difference to their promotion rivals.
And when asked if he thought Diss could still catch Sudbury before the end of the season next weekend, Coombs admitted it was a tall order.
“No I don’t think so,” the Diss head coach said. “Sudbury are a good side and they look like they’ll keep their run going now.
“We lost at Norwich and then at Romford and Gidea Park recently. If you want promotion then you have to win them games.
“At the end of the day at one stage we had five first- team players out of the pack, and without a doubt that has made a difference.”
Scrum-half Jamie Burroughs and forwards Mike Fuller, John Laurie and Fraser Hall have all had lengthy spells on the sidelines this year, with Coombs having to field younger, less experienced players to fill the gaps.
“We’ve had three 18 or 19-year-olds playing in the team and they’ve done very well,” he said.
“Ollie Darwell-Taylor is one of them, but he’s moving to London so it’s difficult to keep hold of these players.
“It’s been a long season but Saturday I want the boys to go out and enjoy themselves.
“We’ll regroup in the summer and be back next season fit and ready to go.”
Diss finish off their Division Two North East campaign with a home clash against Ipswich next weekend.
Before then they complete their away fixtures with a visit to Norfolk rivals Holt tomorrow, for what will be the third meeting between the two sides this season.
Diss complete their season against North Walsham in the Norfolk Cup final on May 7 at Crusaders.