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Home > News > Schmid's call to arms
Your News Schmid's call to arms

MIKE SCHMID has told his Esher stars to ‘stand up and be counted’ if they are to repeat last season’s stunning triumph over local rivals London Welsh on Friday.

The part-time Esher side pulled off a memorable 22-19 victory over high- flying Exiles at Molesey Road a year ago almost to the day.

But Esher chief Schmid knows the odds are stacked against Esher after four straight defeats leaves them bottom of the Championship without a point.

In contrast, Welsh are riding high in third place with three wins from four with their only reverse a narrow 22-18 defeat at Bedford.

Now Schmid is demanding his side produce an 80-minute display as they aim to bounce back from a disappointing 35-21 defeat at Moseley.

Schmid said: “The guys have got to stand up and be counted against London Welsh if we are to get anything out of the game.

“We must fight tooth and nail and make sure we come off that pitch proud of the way we played.

“We know we will have to defend for long periods, as we had to last year when we made over 150 tackles against them and forced them into errors.

“We must put our bodies on the line and fight for everything and show the same total commitment. Our defence has got to give us the platform to win games and we need a similar intensity on Friday night.”

Schmid branded the second-half display at Moseley ‘inexcusable’ after the Surrey side had led 14-13 at half-time with tries from Mike MacFarlane and Perry Parker.

He admitted: “We had a pretty good first half but then made a couple of mistakes after half-time where we defended poorly and missed tackles on the gainline.

“We have to bring an intensity and physicality to the game for 80 minutes if we are to compete with sides. We have had a few good halves this season but not a complete game and that is what we will need against London Welsh.”

Esher also put up a spirited display in the return at Old Deer Park last season when they went down 24-17.

But Schmid is aware his injury-hit side will need to improve dramatically against the Exiles, who are one of the Championship title favourites.

Esher suffered two further injury blows at Moseley with back row John Downey suffering an ankle injury and lock Ian Kench going off with a calf problem but both could be available to face the Exiles.

On the plus side former Bedford back rower Chris Goodman came off the bench at Moseley for his first Esher appearance after recovering from a hand injury.

Mike Blakeburn, who had a hernia op in the summer, could also be in contention after making his comeback in the British and Irish Cup defeat at Bedford last week.

Geoff Griffiths and Andy Wright also may be available for Friday following injury while Esher could also be boosted by the services of Harlequins trio Charlie Walker, Rob Buchanan and Ollie Lindsay-Hague.

Wing Sam Edgerley is also pushing for a starting place after scoring Esher’s third try off the bench in the defeat at Moseley.

Schmid added: “Lindsay-Hague and Edgerley have both made an impact off the bench and are in contention to start. The back three is one area where there is a lot of competition for places and we have got good strength in depth.”

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