JAMES FORD is eager for York City Knights to build on the positives shown in their defeat at Batley Bulldogs and believes that “that type of performances wins a lot more games than it loses.”

York head to Whitehaven on Sunday (3pm) with the hope of ending a three game losing run in the Betfred Championship and putting their play-off push back on track.

The Knights were beaten 22-20 by Batley last time out and, in spite of the final scoreline, Ford said that he was more satisfied than he has been after some previous wins because of his side’s display.

“The most important statistic is the scoreline and we came out on the wrong side of that very narrowly,” said the York head coach.

“When we win games, we often talk about the performance and aspects of the performance that lead to positive outcomes consistently.

“When I watched the game back, it looks like a really strong performance and the stats that we collect are probably the best that we’ve had all season.

“But sometimes that’s the way that the cookie crumbles and we can’t let it knock us or let it knock our confidence because ultimately that type of performance wins a lot more games than it loses, that’s for sure.”

Expanding on the aforementioned statistics, Ford added that the metres made, line breaks forced and tackles missed all indicated an improved showing from his squad.

“We made just under 1,600 metres, which is an astonishing amount really,” he said. “There were 15 line breaks that we made during the game and our completion wasn’t bad, it was 79 per cent overall.

“We only missed 10 tackles and you contrast that to Halifax where we were at 35 tackles missed.

“And we’ve had individuals that have come up with 10 misses in a game.

“I came away from the game really positive. There were things that we could do better, we could kick the ball a little bit better at the end of our sets and, being hyper critical, we need to finish more chances.

“We’re working really hard at it and there’s lots to be positive about from that performance.”

York travel to 12th-placed Whitehaven this weekend and face a Cumbrian side without a win in their last five matches, sitting just one spot above the Championship’s relegation places.

It also offers Ford’s side a chance to end York’s miserable record at Haven, having last won there in 1992.

“As I’ve said before, travelling home or away, it doesn’t matter,” Ford said.

“Whitehaven have got some good players. Whether he’s on the wing or at full-back, (Lachlan) Walmsley is a threat and is tremendously quick.

“The right-side half Nikau Williams is a good player and the left half (Karl) Dixon has a strong running game and the two nines (James) Newton and (Callum) Phillips have got plenty of deception.

“And, as any Cumbrian team will have, they’ve got some big raw-born blokes who are hard to handle.

“I’ve just described a good team, which they are, so we need to go there and make sure that we perform well.”

York have made two changes to their 21-man squad for the trip to Whitehaven as forwards Danny Kirmond and James Green return to the fold, with AJ Towse and Ryan Atkins dropping out.

Atkins is suspended after picking up a one-match ban during York’s 30-6 defeat at Halifax Panthers earlier this month.

Castleford Tigers loanee Tyla Hepi is included in the squad, despite playing for his parent club in their 16-6 defeat to Catalans Dragons on Thursday evening.

York City Knights squad: Marsh, Bass, Salter, K. Dixon, R. Dixon, Jubb, Teanby, Clarkson, Scott, Cuthbertson, Baldwinson, Stock, Kirmond, Green, Spears, Porter, Jones-Bishop, Washbrook, Sweeting, Hepi, Ellis.