Anthony Murray hopes North Wales Crusaders can break the losing habit at Hemel Stags


Charlie Croasdale

NORTH WALES CRUSADERS head coach Anthony Murray admits confidence is low in the camp. 

Crusaders suffered a 31-24 defeat at the hands of London Skolars at The Racecourse on Sunday, their fourth loss in five League One fixtures this season, and Murray has also seen his side dumped out of both cup competitions at the first hurdle. 

However, the Cru boss feels his new-look team are improving week-by-week and feels a win is just around the corner, having had to rebuild the squad following a player exodus at the start of the season following ‘significant paycuts’ to the playing budget. 

“I wasn’t too disappointed as we keep on improving each game,” the Wrexham club’s head coach explained after tries from Alex Thompson (2), Ryan Smith and Scott Turner gave Crusaders a chance of victory.

“We’re low on confidence at the moment. The players are in the habit of losing and it’s difficult to get out of that habit. It’s difficult to break the cycle and when you’re losing, little things go against you and you feel like you’re down on your luck. 

“The only way to break out of it is to work hard and show a lot of character, and there’s no question our lads keep doing that. 

“It’s not just a new-look squad, it’s a very young squad with some lads who haven’t played semi-professional rugby before. 

“It’s a big ask and we knew London are a much-improved side, they have only lost once all season and had knocked Doncaster out of the cup. 

“I spoke to the players before the London game and we went through the defeat at Doncaster and how we could improve, how to iron out our mistakes here and there. 

“To a large extent we did that against London, but at one of two moments we’ve just lost concentration and they can punish you. But in terms of effort and commitment, I can’t fault the players. 

“I’ve no complaints, London edged the game and deserved to win. It was a close game but they are a very capable team and they had more experience than we did, and that counts towards the end.” 

For all the build-up to Crusaders' trip to Hemel Stags, see Friday's edition of the Leader.

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