A WEEK after beating second-from-bottom Bournemouth, high-flying Hartpury travel to basement boys Exmouth in National Two South.
Hartpury made home advantage count as they beat Bournemouth 29-5 but director of rugby Alan Martinovic is taking nothing for granted despite Exmouth’s struggles this season.
Martinovic says he will make sure the fact that Exmouth are rooted to the bottom does not enter his players’ minds when they arrive in Devon looking to extend their 12-point lead at the top of the standings.
He said: “This league is so tight, virtually every single team in this division is fighting for something, so I don’t think there is any lack of appreciation of what we are going to be up against. “We are expecting a very difficult game, no one has been rolling over them so we don’t expect to either.”
“You are either playing against sides fighting to go up, or sides fighting against relegation.”
The last time the two sides met in Gloucestershire, back in sunnier September, Hartpury triumphed 50-10, but Martinovic says he is not expecting a similar result especially as the recent bad weather conditions have helped produce some strange results.
He said: “The last time we played was in very different conditions and we have seen some surprising results in this league.
“Last week Dings won at Redruth, which is a hard place to go, which we know, because we lost there.
“The last time we played each other was in different conditions to what we face now so it is almost an entirely different game.
“We will be playing in very difficult conditions by the seafront with the wind and rain, so it will be pretty horrendous. Without a doubt, that acts as a leveller.”