NEWCASTLE Falcons are confident their crucial match at home to Harlequins will go ahead tomorrow, despite an inch a half of snow.

The Kingston Park pitch is covered for a match to be televised live on Sky, which is why it has been brought forward a day with a 2pm kick-off.

The Falcons believe they get bigger crowds on a Sunday, but tickets have been selling well.

They have named all their new signings in a squad of 26, although assuming Mark Andrews plays at lock, one of the two back row men, Warren Britz and Craig Newby, will have to stand down.

Centre Tom May has also been named after missing the last two games with a wrist injury, although with New Zealander Mark Mayerhofler at inside centre, the only way May could get back in would be for Jamie Noon to switch to full back.

Mark Wilkinson and Epi Taione are also in the squad, which seems to scotch rumours that they were among those being lined up to go to Darlington Mowden Park on loan.

Mowden entertain Liverpool St Helens and are waiting to see whether Jonno Wilson will be fit to return at centre.

Anthony Elwine deputised last week following his switch from Spalding, who asked if Mowden could do them a favour in return.

The upshot is that Ian James, who can play at lock or blind side, is to make his comeback after shoulder and ankle injuries by playing two games for the Midlands One club.

They are away to Bromsgrove tomorrow and Hinckley next week, so as James is currently working in Northampton he will not have far to travel. Once he has proved his fitness, however, he intends to play again for Mowden, his home club.

Mowden are also awaiting developments at Kingston Park regarding Steve Bates, who has often taken their Thursday night training sessions this season.

After losing his coaching role with the Falcons he isn't happy with his new position as analyser of opposing teams and is holding discussions about his future.

Blaydon visit bottom club Scunthorpe without skipper Dave Guthrie, who was taken off with a back problem last week.

James Keany deputises and James Lofthouse switches to centre, with Northumbria University student Sean Hannah coming in at full back.

Middlesbrough are at home to Hull in North Two East and recall Mark Thompson at centre as James Thomas has gone back to Cardiff University.

Carl Burnett, the centre they hoped would solve their goal-kicking problems, continues his comeback in the seconds.

Horden should consolidate third place at home to Morpeth, while fourth-placed Westoe entertain Stockton.

Stockton's player-coach Alan Brown is struggling to recover from the gashed eye which forced him off after 15 minutes last week, while his brother Wayne has a wrist injury. Phil Austen is likely to start at No 8 and Jamie Brown also stands by.