It will be a ‘horrible game on a horrible pitch’ predicts Ian Grieve when the forward's Ealing Trailfinders face Cornish Pirates in Penzance on Sunday.
The daunting task is almost do-or-die for Grieve and co, with time running out to save their Greene King IPA Championship skins from a second relegation in three seasons.
It’s made worse by the knowledge Pirates have won eight out of the last nine games.
The back row forward knows the Mennaye ground well from his time with Bristol and Plymouth Albion, and was part of the Trailfinders winning side that sunk Pirates at Vallis Way in September, thanks to touchdowns from Rhys Crane, Phil Chesters and a penalty try.
Since then, Pirates have scrambled to in mid-table and almost certain safety in contrast to Ealing's stare at the trap door and six points from safety.
Grieve did little to quell supporters anxiety with his own personal preview of the mission to Penzance.
“They’ve got a really good support system and a good following and their supporters like to let you know that nobody’s welcome,” Grieve added. “If we can get the win it will be excellent for us for the rest of the season.
“It won’t be all try-scoring and a shiny game.
"It is going to be horrible and a horrible pitch, but we’ve done a lot of work on the grass pitch to help us get used to the conditions this weekend. I haven’t been to the Mennaye for a long time, but it is always a good game.”