Redruth head coach Ashley Morcom hopes his side can rediscover their winning form at Southend this weekend.
The Reds return to National League Two South combat for the first time since their derby win over the Cornish All Blacks just before Christmas.
However, they were in action on Boxing Day when they lost their Rodda’s Milk Cup match with old rivals Camborne.
Morcom remains confident his side can start 2014 with a positive performance on their league return at Warners Bridge Park.
Southend’s form has been strong in the first half of the season. They are currently fifth in the table, while visiting Redruth are 11th.
Morcom, who also expressed some doubt over whether the fixture will survive the current poor weather, said the long travel time was less than ideal.
“Travelling up to Southend isn’t going to be easy,” he said. “For your first game back in the New Year, you don’t want to be travelling six or seven hours on a mini-bus to play a game of rugby.
“We have missed a lot of training and it is two and a half weeks since we played competitive, National League rugby.
“Southend are going quite well at the moment and we have to really make sure we go up there with the right mentality.”
Reflecting on the Reds’ 18-8 success over their great rivals, Launceston, Morcom added: “The momentum and morale from the Launceston match is still very much there but it would have been better if we had been playing week in and week out. It was two and a bit weeks ago that we played Launceston and it is frustrating to play good rugby against a good side and then have the Christmas break.
“We’re happy in one sense that the break came when it did because we have some battered bodies. But it would have been nice to back up our form the following Saturday.”
The 35-26 Boxing Day loss to Camborne frustrated Morcom. He said: “There is always a bit of rivalry between Camborne and Redruth. It is nice to keep up the tradition but when you are playing sides that are two leagues below you, the level of rugby they play is very negative.
“It was difficult for the referee but he probably refereed to a lower level. They got away with murder but we were penalised for things that, in my eyes, were legit.
“It is frustrating we didn’t do better but they were obviously more up for it than we were. They played the conditions and the referee a lot better than we did.”
Redruth will have to cope without captain Chris Fuca, who will sit out this weekend as he looks to recover from shoulder, neck and back problems. However, back-row forward Mat Bolwell will be on loan from the Cornish Pirates.
Morcom said: “We’re looking pretty strong but we’ll get a better indication as the weekend approaches. Chris Fuca will be out this weekend due to a shoulder injury that he has been carrying for a long time.
“We have gained an on-loan player from the Pirates in Matt Bolwell, who played for us on Boxing Day and really impressed me. He will start the game for us at the weekend.”