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Dave Smith believes Diss' London One North season will start this weekend

By Sport Diss

Diss head coach Dave Smith believes his side’s season starts when they welcome Southend Saxons to Mackenders tomorrow (3pm).

KEEP THE FAITH: Dave Smith says the mood in the Diss camp is still positive despite their losing start to the new London 1 North season
KEEP THE FAITH: Dave Smith says the mood in the Diss camp is still positive despite their losing start to the new London 1 North season

It has been a tough start for Diss in their second season back in London 1 North, with six defeats from their opening six games, while last weekend’s scheduled trip to Amersham & Chiltern was postponed due to traffic.

But while it has not been the start to the campaign that Smith would have hoped for, his side have played five of the top six, which has left the head coach feeling positive heading into a run of fixtures against teams closer to them in the table.

“In the first eight weeks we’ve played (five) of the top six sides and we’ve used 32 players,” Smith said.

“I know everyone has to play everyone else at some point, but no one has had the start that we’ve had, but it is what it is.

“We’ve seen the last few weeks some 100-point batterings from the top sides, but we’ve not had that.

“Ironically, I thought our game at Rochford Hundred (69-7 defeat) was the best performance we’ve had.

“For us, the season starts this weekend. A win would kick-start us, but even if we don’t, taking points out of the games helps. Of course, we want to win and take as many points from each game as we can.”

After the league took a weekend break on October 13, Diss were set to return to action last Saturday at Amersham & Chiltern.

But the 118-mile trip to Buckinghamshire was disrupted by traffic and the game was eventually postponed and rearranged for November 10.

“We were sat on the A12 for five hours,” Smith explains. “It was frustrating because I had one of the best sides I could have put out.

“We probably needed the rest, though, as we’ve had a few injuries recently. We’re looking reasonably strong now, but we’re still trying to sign a few more players to make us stronger.”

One player who has joined and is expected to make his debut this weekend is 18-year-old Andre Dunn.

The New Zealand-born teenager graduated from the Leicester Tigers Academy earlier this year.

The centre was voted as the winner of the academy’s try of the year vote, with his winning try coming during the Tigers’ 43-21 win against Gloucester in the Under-18 Academy League Grand Final.

The ex-Langley School pupil then made his Premiership League A debut for the Tigers against Wasps a few weeks after starring in that Grand Final.

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