Smith calls on Diss players to improve decision making

IMPROVEMENTS NEEDED: Dave Smith (foreground) wants his Diss team to start managing matches better, particularly when they have built up a healthy winning advantage
IMPROVEMENTS NEEDED: Dave Smith (foreground) wants his Diss team to start managing matches better, particularly when they have built up a healthy winning advantage
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Dave Smith is eager for his Diss RFC side to banish the ‘annoying habit’ they have picked up in recent weeks.

The Blues have tended to start games in positive fashion, running in tries and building up a lead.

However, they allow the opposition back into the contest during the second half — something that came back to bite them at Cantabrigian a fortnight ago when they blew a 22-6 lead at the interval to draw 25-25.

It was a result that saw Diss, who had the weekend off, slip to second in the London League Two North East table from Old Cooperians on points difference.

Sixth-placed Woodford are the visitors to Mackenders tomorrow (2.30pm), and Smith is calling on his players to make better decisions at crucial moments.

“We are allowing teams to find a way back into games when we shouldn’t. It is becoming an annoying habit,” said the head coach.

“It comes down to game management — what to do and when to do it.

“A lot of it comes down to concentration levels. Every single player needs to be switched on for 80 minutes.

“But it is not something we cannot fix through hard work in training. Ability means nothing if you do not work hard.

“We have to fix it because when we play well and hit our straps, we are the best side in the league.”

Smith will have to make do without the services of Ed Hudson for the Woodford clash after the hooker was ruled out for three weeks with a head injury.

On a more positive note, scrum half Jamie Burroughs could come back into contention following a stint on the sidelines.

n Elsewhere, Eastern Counties Greene King League Division Two North leaders Diss Saracens travel to struggling Dereham looking to maintain their 100 per cent winning record on the road this season (2.30pm).

Diss III are also away from home as they are due to face Watton in a Eastern Counties Greene King League Division Three North encounter (2.30pm).