“THE mood is one of determination to stay up. There are no negative vibes. We’ve just got to get the points.”
That was the view of full-back Tom Carr ahead of York City Knights’ all-important match at Workington Town tomorrow (7.30pm).
Defeat could mathematically see the Knights relegated from the Kingstone Press Championship, but victory – a first on the road in the league since June 2011 – would give them a lifeline with two more games to play.
A run of eight straight defeats – culminating in significant losses in six-pointers against relegation rivals Swinton and Hunslet – has turned a promising season sour. But Carr, pictured, insists all is not over yet.
“We can survive. We are targeting this one to break that bad run.
We’ve beaten Workington at home and there’s nothing to say we can’t beat them away,” said the 22-yearold, who bagged a try and six goals in that 48-6 romp over the Cumbrians back in March.
“Everyone in the camp is playing to stay up. Training last week was brilliant and I expect everyone will be in high spirits again this week, determined to beat Workington.
“Everyone is confident about winning. But then everyone was confident of beating Hunslet at the weekend. We get in front but for some reason can’t hold the lead. There is pressure, but it’s hard to put your finger on it. Maybe it is starting to show. We are at the bottom – but we are fighting to stay up.”
The Knights will be relegated tomorrow if they come away from Derwent Park with nothing while Hunslet win at leaders Sheffield in the last-ever match at Don Valley Stadium – albeit an unlikely outcome – and Barrow get at least a draw at Swinton.
Carr insisted the players were not considering the permutations, or the need to nick at least a bonus point to stay alive ahead of their game in hand, which is away to Doncaster next Wednesday.
“We’re playing to win, simple as that,” he said. “We won’t be playing for a bonus point. We’re going to Workington to win the game.”
Some fans are already resigned to relegation and York are clear odds-on favourites for the drop.But Carr said: “I disagree with that. If we win all three we should stay up. We’ve got to go there on Thursday with the mentality that we are going to stay up.”
As for what’s been going wrong since victory over Keighley on June 9, Carr said: “We’ve been killed by poor decisions. It happened again on Sunday.
“George Elliott, pictured right, scored in the corner (in the 33- 30 defeat to Hunslet) but the referee stated he had hit the flag first – but the flag is not in touch now. We’ve had lots of bad decisions go against us.
“In the television game (against Barrow) a few weeks ago, the ref went to the video ref seven times. Nothing has been going our way.
“We’ve gone about things the right way in training.
“Everyone has trained their heart out and is doing everything right off the pitch. We’ve got to fix things up.”
A long Thursday afternoon trek all the way to Workington is not likely to provide the easiest of preparations, especially for a match of such significance for a bunch of part-time players who have to do day jobs before heading over to the Cumbrian coast.
However, Carr insisted they would be well set come kickoff.
Ironically, a 7.30pm kick-off is perhaps better for Carr himself than a Sunday afternoon match given he works nights in his job away from rugby league – meaning his body clock is better suited to evening games.
He added: “It’s a long trip but everyone will be travelling in the right frame of mind, preparing the right way for the game. We should be ready.”