By Neil Bonnar
SEDGLEY Park believe the spirit in defeat on Saturday will ultimately see them survive in National League One this season.
The Whitefield men suffered their 10th defeat in the last 11 matches with a 32-13 reverse at Richmond in London.
But the club takes heart from the manner of the performance, and manager Geoff Roberts is calling on the team to replicate it between now and the end of the season.
Tigers are third bottom, 12 points adrift of safety, with the big derby against Fylde coming up at Park Lane on Saturday (2.30pm).
The fixture will attract one of the biggest home crowds of the season, and Roberts hopes the crowd can be treated to the kind of performance his side put in at the weekend.
“It was a fantastic performance, much better than of late,” he said.
“We were spirited, threw the ball about and played with much more confidence.
“We have some supporters who live in London and come to watch us when we’re there, and they came on the bus after and said what a great performance we put in.
“We lost, but you have to have the right performance before things turn around, and if we continue to play like that I’m sure they will.”
Sedgley, who expect to have two of their main men, Garth Dew and Juan Crous back against Fylde, went 10-0 behind early on then fought back strongly, only seeing the game go away from them in the last 10 minutes.
“The lads really dug in after that bad start, and it looked for a time in the second half that we were going to get something out of the game.
“It was one of those games where the scoreline did not reflect what happened on the pitch.
“If we had only had one or two of our bigger players back we would have come away with something.
“Hopefully that will happen against Fylde this week. It’s always special when we play them because we’re the only two teams from Lancashire and you play for the bragging rights.
“And we get our biggest gate of the season, 600-700 instead of 300-400 because they bring a couple of hundred over.”