MIKE GRADY will lead his North Wales Crusaders side into Sunday’s Ladbrokes Challenge Cup tie with Gloucestershire All Golds expecting nothing less than a tough outing.
The Crusaders enter the game on the back of a dramatic 17-16 golden point victory over York City Knights, and Grady believes that there are improvements to be made by the side: “I thought that generally we played well last Sunday but neither side deserved to lose that game.
“During the first 15 or 20 minutes of the game we were the dominant side but couldn’t make it count so that’s an area that I’ll be looking at.
“I’ve had to watch the ending of last weeks game a few times over and you have to give credit to every player in the side for not letting their heads drop and going on to win the game.”
With a place in the League One Cup quarterfinals secured, Grady’s attention now turns to the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup which begins this Sunday, at the Prince Of Wales Stadium: “Gloucester [All Golds] are a very good side and they have some quality within their ranks.
“Anthony Murray, who’s a good friend of mine, has joined up with them as assistant coach and any team that he’s involved with will always present you with a challenge.
“I’m well aware of the threat that they’ll pose to us going forward and there’s no doubt that we’re in for a tough encounter – especially with it being an away fixture.
“I know that the sides met a few times last season and that they were all close encounters and I’m expecting nothing different on Sunday.”
He added: “The Challenge Cup does have a slightly different feel to it and you know that progression could lead to you playing one of the Super League sides further down the line, so it’s a fantastic competition to progress in.
“Both sides will be aware of that and both will be eager to book their place in the next round.”
Following last weekends emphatic showing, Grady acknowledges that he’s got a selection headache ahead of the clash: “I’ve got a decision to make as we’ve put in a strong performance against York and so I don’t really want to change things up too much.
“Saying that, we have a good strength in depth and with the likes of Jonny Walker back in training I’ve got plenty of options come Sunday.”
Grady also confirmed that a few players will be absent due to injuries: “Unfortunately we’ve got Andy Moulsdale, Alex Thompson and Dean Thompson looking like they could be out for a few games and also Matt Davies who has broken his hand.
“That’s why it’s good to have options across the board and a good competition for places.”