Preston Grasshoppers target first home win of the campaign when they host Wharfedale

​​Preston Grasshoppers are eyeing a couple of big targets in their first home game for three weeks – continuing their two-match winning run, and notching their first victory at Lightfoot Green since the final weekend of last season.
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Coincidentally, their visitors that day, Wharfedale – who were despatched 27-12 – provide the opposition again tomorrow.

All four of Hoppers’ victories in National League Two North this season have come on the road – including the last two in succession – together with two defeats; in contrast, their home record is three defeats and a draw.

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The last fortnight’s successes have lifted them to eighth in the table, while Wharfedale are third after seven victories and three defeats.

But they have lost their last two away games, at Hull Ionians and leaders Leeds Tykes.

Hoppers’ home defeat of the Dalesmen last April atoned for an 18-57 thumping in the away clash.

Head coach Dan Orwin said last week’s win at Billingham was “a funny game in the sense of all the yellow cards” but he was delighted that Hoppers “got out of the blocks really quickly” and built up a strong lead.

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They have to make changes tomorrow, as prop Tom Guest suffered a broken jaw last week and Tyler Spence is unavailable.

Wade Williams makes his first start in the front row, Jack Lightowler switches back to the wing as Ed Keohane and Jake Maher are reunited at centre and Dec Norrington and Ben Dorrington are in the back row.

Having stopped their run of five successive defeats last Saturday, Fylde now travel to Hull Ionians, who are languishing next to bottom, following three wins and seven defeats.

Fylde moved back up to sixth last Saturday and now have four wins, a draw and six defeats, but they have lost their last four away games. They are only three points behind Wharfedale, but have played a game more than most of the other clubs.

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Fylde and Ionians played out a couple of close fixtures last season, with the Humbersiders losing both – 31-34 at home and 15-22 away.

Vale of Lune were due a weekend off, but have rearranged the Regional Two NorthWest visit to Liverpool St Helens, which was called off due to a waterlogged pitch on October 21.

They will be hoping history doesn’t repeat itself, with another poor weather forecast. Having lost their last four games – and seven out of nine in all – LSH are bottom of the table, with 12 points. Vale are three places and seven points above them, following their second successive win last Saturday.

Overall, they have won three, drawn one and lost five.

Jonny Silverwood and Billy Swarbrick start at half-back, with Jordan Fern and Danny Leighton on the wings. Harm Dokter hooks, Harry

Fellows is at lock and Matt Field comes into the back row.

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​HOPPERS: Browne; Lightowler, Maher, Keohane, Haigh; Hunt, Brand; Pope, Wilkinson, Williams, Murray, Causey, Norrington, Dorrington, Richard-son. Replacements: Partington, Rimmer, Townsley, Ward, Gosling.

VALE: Hall; Leighton, Abdelghafar, Ramwell, Fern; Silverwood, Swarbrick; Pillow, Dokter, Stevens, Harrison, Fowler, Field, J Wallbank, Ayrton.