Hull of a test for top-of-the-table Hoppers

Hull, the only side whom Preston Grasshoppers have failed to beat this season, are the first visitors of 2018 to Lightfoot Green tomorrow in a top-of-the-table treat.

Friday, 5th January 2018, 8:00 am
Matt Lamprey in action for Hoppers (photo: Mike Craig)

The teams fought out a 10-10 draw on Humberside in September, the only blemish in leaders Hoppers’ 14 games to date.

Second-placed Hull, with a game in hand, are 12 points behind, having won 10 and lost two, in addition to that draw.

Oddly, both defeats have been at home, with the Humbersiders racking up five wins out of five on the road.

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Hoppers name virtually a full-strength side, with No.8 Matt Lamprey back from injury and centre Alex Hurst returning after being unavailable before Christmas.

But winger Connor Trueman is out for the season with a knee injury.

Prop Dan Madden rejoins the bench after injury.

Starting the New Year on top of North One West, Vale of Lune travel to Manchester, who are 11th after five victories and seven defeats. Remarkably, it will be Vale’s first away fixture since October 7.

Manchester lost 12-66 at Powderhouse Lane back in September.

Compared to the 
abandoned game against Blackburn, Vale have Tom Cvijanovic at lock, with Al Crookall on the bench.

Fylde make their 
inaugural visit to Old Elthamians, who beat them 
43-7 at Ansdell earlier in the National League One 

The London side are seventh following eight wins, a draw and seven defeats. 
Fylde remain bottom, with just three wins in 16 games.

Hoppers: Jordan; Stott, Hurst, Fitzpatrick, Crosley; Ward, Squirrell; Mabaya, Millea, Altham, Roddy, Arnold, A Murray, Trippier, Lamprey. Replacements: Madden, Gale, Spence.

Vale: J Dorrington; Jacques, Owens, B Dorrington, Hall; Finan, Swarbrick; Ferguson, Powers, Pillow, Fellows, Cvijanovic, Ayrton, Stewart, Wallbank. Replacements: Crookall, Ramwell, AN Other.