14th June 2018, 10:17 | ncl

NCL Preview | A decisive weekend

NCL Preview | A decisive weekend

By Alastair Hancock

Premier Division | Hunslet Club Parkside v Rochdale Mayfield




It has been a contrasting 2018 so far for Hunslet and Rochdale with either side at both ends of the Premier Division table.

Parkside currently sit top of the league and are 18 points ahead of Saturday’s opponents who are 10th having picked up six points from 11 games.

It is a different story for Hunslet, as they have stormed the first tier and are well on their way to becoming champions. They are still unbeaten after winning 12 from 12 and are eight points clear of second place Egremont Rangers with just 10 games remaining.

The two sides last met in April where Parkside powered to a 12-32 win. Will it be a repeat this weekend and will Hunslet edge closer to the title or can Rochdale create a shock and force a first defeat of the season for Hunslet?

Division 1 | Ince Rose Bridge v Leigh Miners Rangers




Leigh have been in terrific form recently, winning their last six games – a run which has seen them climb to third just two points behind the top two. Coincidently their last defeats came against the two leaders Thornhill Trojans and Lock Lane in back to back weeks in April.

Rangers travel to Ince Rose Bridge this weekend, a team that has struggled to find consistency in 2018, which is evident from their table position – they are 10th and just two points off the bottom two.

The reverse fixture two months ago saw Leigh take the two points, as they proved too strong for their opponents with a 30-6 victory.

Can Ince give themselves some breathing space from potential relegation or will Leigh put pressure on the top two?

Division 2 | Dewsbury Moor Maroons v Stanningley




It’s a battle between the top two this weekend as Dewsbury host Stanningley in a Yorkshire derby.

Stanningley lead the way on 20 points but the Maroons are just behind on 18 with a game in hand on their rivals.

Both teams have lost just twice all season with one of Stanningley’s coming against Dewbsury when they last met in March, as it was a tight 22-26 triumph for the Maroons.

As we are half way through the season, the result of Saturday’s match could be a defining moment to decide who takes top spot, as a win for the leaders would extend the gap to four but the reverse would see them both go level on points.

Division 3 | Gateshead Storm v Stanley Rangers




Although we are only 11 games into the Division Three 2018 season, it could be a relegation decider between Gateshead and Stanley this weekend.

Both sides are rock bottom on two points, as they have only won once all year – ironically, Stanley’s came against Gateshead in March as they beat the Storm 20-12.

Both are coming back off heavy defeats last weekend, as Gateshead were defeated 10-50 by Dewsbury Celtic while Rangers lost 8-44 to 10th place Salford City Roosters.

Gateshead’s Zack Clark and Michael Mitchell both have six tries each so far this season and could prove vital in the Storm’s hopes of a victory on Saturday.