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Sudbury Rugby Club to host Colchester with Frazer Beckett believing right attitude will be key to success



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Sudbury co-captain Frazer Beckett is expecting nothing less than their ‘toughest game of the season’ when Colchester visit Whittome Field tomorrow (3pm) – and he believes they must be mentally ready to meet the challenge.

The Blues go into the derby, rearranged from a Covid call-off the weekend before Christmas, having claimed all five points without having to play Chingford on Saturday after the visitors had been unable to raise a side.

It means they still hold a three-point lead over Shelford at the top of the London 1 North table as they chase the automatic promotion spot with nine games to go.

Frazer Beckett is looking to avenge their derby defeat against Colchester this weekend Picture: Mecha Morton
Frazer Beckett is looking to avenge their derby defeat against Colchester this weekend Picture: Mecha Morton

Colchester find themselves in a mid-table sixth place following bouncing back from a 14-8 defeat at Shelford with a 43-15 victory at third-from-bottom Norwich.

Anthony O’Riordan’s side are so far the only team to have beaten Sudbury this season, edging a tight game 17-15 at the opening of their artificial pitch in the second round of matches back in September.

And Beckett believes they will face another big test as they look to keep themselves at the summit off the back of this weekend.

Frazer Beckett, who plays in the same side as his younger brother Austin, is in his 10th season with the Sudbury first team Picture: Mark Westley
Frazer Beckett, who plays in the same side as his younger brother Austin, is in his 10th season with the Sudbury first team Picture: Mark Westley

“We are under no illusions that it is going to be anything but the toughest game of the season, especially emotively with it being a local derby for us,” said the scrum-half who is in his 10th season with his home-town club.

“This week is going to be crucial with how we can best demonstrate ourselves at the weekend.

“Colchester have their innate strengths and and we just need to understand that and be able to combat those.”

He added: “It is always a very physical game that Colchester bring and we need to be able to counter-act that and match their intensity.

Sam Bixby has been sharing the Sudbury captaincy with Frazer Beckett so far this season Picture: Mark Westley
Sam Bixby has been sharing the Sudbury captaincy with Frazer Beckett so far this season Picture: Mark Westley

“It will probably boil down to the team with the best mindset and attitude on the day that will end up winning.”

He is also hoping a big crowd at Whittome Field can play their part in giving them the upper-hand.

“We are hoping they are going to be the 16th man for us by bringing that vocality we need,” he said.

The 27-year-old has been alternating the captain’s armband this season with hooker/back rower Sam Bixby and has certainly enjoyed the extra responsibilities that come with it.

He said: “It has been a real pleasure to take it on and it is a real honour to even be considered.

“It means I have to take additional responsibility and think a little bit deeper in the game about what the best strategy is which has added to my game.”

Working under a new head coach in Craig Burrows, who came in over the summer from Bury St Edmunds, has also helped him progress, as well as the team itself.

“He has brought a different perspective to the game for us and a direct leadership as well as his own plan to the structure around our game which the players have bought into,” he said.

And their lofty position this season has not surprised Beckett.

Although accepting there is still a long way to go, he said: “It is kind of the coming of age season I think.

“We have always been known to be a young team and we’ve managed to keep a nucleus of players in the squad with the addition of a handful of other players who have matured together.”