Bideford take on St Austell as they chase Western Counties promotion goal
Victory over St Austell tomorrow would see Bideford take a huge step towards fulfilling a goal they set at the start of the season.
The Tribute Western Counties (west) top two clash at King George's Field (2.30pm) with Bideford manager Dave Harris predicting the winners "should go on to take the title".
The champions will be promoted to South West One and, that, said coach Kevin Booth, has been Bideford's aim since they gathered in pre-season.
He said: "We did a questionnaire at the beginning of the season and asked the players, 'What are your aspirations?'
"Everyone said they wanted to play at a higher level, so we made it clear to them that it's up to them to get there."
They have done a good job so far, going to the top of the table with an 11-match unbeaten run, which ended on Saturday with defeat at Penryn, and boasting an unbeaten home record that makes them slight favourites for tomorrow's showdown.
"We're confident in our ability to do it," said Booth. "We have got a great deal of respect for our opponents. We do our homework on them, our players are confident but not arrogant."
Tomorrow's showdown has been looming large since the turn of the year, with the top two out on their own since January.
But Booth insisted Bideford had never looked ahead further than the next game.
"We are taking it one game at a time, that is our one target, and we have always been honest about that," he said.
"We have got aspirations to win the league and we want to get promoted but we have never looked any further than the next weekend."
The teams go into tomorrow's showdown level on 83 points. Bideford have the edge on points difference but St Austell have a game in hand.
Bideford have the better of the recent head-to-head record, with four wins to St Austell's three.
Prop Paul Thomas (shoulder) and lock Mike Williams (eye infection) miss the game for Bideford, who name forwards Matt Dennis and Rob Faulkner alongside wing Josh King on the bench.
Captain Andrew Loosemore has overcome a knee concern to start at inside centre.
Last seven meetings
Nov 3, 2012: St Austell 17 Bideford 6 (P: Wickett 2).
Mar 3, 2012: Bideford 39 St Austell 7 (T: G Snell, J Giddy, Norman, Dennis, Olde, King. C: Wickett 3. DG: Wickett).
Oct 29, 2011: St Austell 30 Bideford 27 (T: Allin, C Snell, Olde. C: Wickett 3. P: Wickett 2).
Jan 8, 2011: Bideford 31 St Austell 10 (T: O'Sullivan, Schofield 2, Olde, Dennis. C: Wickett 3).
Sep 25, 2010: St Austell 10 Bideford 14 (T: D Slee 2. C: D Slee 2).
Mar 6, 2010: St Austell 25 Bideford 8 (T: Brown, P: C Snell).
Nov 7, 2009: Bideford 15 St Austell 12 (T: Schofield, J Buckland, S Bright).