BLAYDON will be looking for young props Trevor Davison and Andrew Foster to lay the platform for victory at home to Coventry today.

They pack down together in the absence of Robbie Kalbraier with a back problem, which he hopes to sort out prior to next week's relegation battle at Hull Ionians.

While Foster has been dual-registered with Newcastle Falcons this season, Davison has been handed a two-year contract by the Premiership club and Blaydon coach Micky Ward believes he can make the grade.

Loading article content

Coventry, sixth in National One, will present a formidable challenge. But in six visits to Crow Trees the best they have managed is a draw.

Skipper Keith Laughlin returns for Blaydon, with Andrew Archibald moving up to lock for Andrew Davidson, who has a hip injury.

Fraser Wilson is back on the wing and Andrew Baggett returns to the bench.

Darlington Mowden Park entertain bottom club Macclesfield aiming to avenge a 46-13 defeat in November at the height of their six-game slump.

That was one of only two wins for the Cheshire club, who aim to shrug off what looks certain relegation by selling some land to fund ambitious development plans.

Mowden recall Talite Vaioleti to partner Joe Craggs at lock, with Jack Payne moving up to prop. Simon Uzokwe and Luca Petillo return to the back row.

With James Fitzpatrick starting at centre and Garry Law at fly half, Chris Auld is at full back and Josh Bragman drops to the bench.

Billingham recall Michael Whinn at lock for the National Three North trip to Cleckheaton, whose win at Greenwood Road in November brought their hosts' good start to a juddering halt.

The mayor of Durham, Eddie Bell, will be a guest at Hollow Drift to watch the clash between his two former clubs, Durham City and West Hartlepool.

Both need to win for different reasons, with West trying to stay in touch with leaders Pocklington while City's run of five defeats has dropped them into relegation danger.

West have narrowly won both meetings this season, the first coming in the Durham Cup, and will be favourites again with key men returning.

Fly half Gavin Painter, flanker Aaron Myers, centre Liam Checksfield and prop Anth Carr all start. Myers joins skipper Dan Boatman and Sam Miller in a strong back row, forcing Lee Maddison on to the bench.

Durham and Northumberland One leaders Barnard Castle will hope to have Chris McTurk fit for the trip to fourth-placed Horden.

The prolific scorer left the field with a hip injury during last week's 12-11 home win against Gateshead, when fly half Sam Errington kicked the winning conversion.

There were still 15 minutes left, during which Barney hung on heroically, with a third ex-Mowden man, flanker Liam Riley, leading the way.

Title rivals Westoe also face a tough trip to Consett, while Northern host mid-table Stockton, having won the reverse fixture 30-19.

Stockton's speedy young backs remain unchanged for the fifth game in a row but they will be up against the league's top scorers so will also need to show their defensive qualities.

Martin Dixon is available after working away and slots in at No 8, while experienced flanker Joe Green makes a welcome return to the squad after a year out with a knee injury.

Middlesbrough face Gosforth in the first of their five remaining home games, which include a Yorkshire Shield semi-final against Wath-upon-Dearne on March 18.

All matches revert to a 3pm kick-off today.