Darren Cunningham admitted his Hawick side are lying face-down on the canvas after a fifth consecutive defeat, but is convinced they can pick-themselves up with a victory against Watsonians on Saturday at Mansfield Park.
The boxing analogy was apt when describing Hawick’s early season BT Premiership performances.
The Greens have stumbled from one hard-hit to the next to begin the new season, leaving them blooded and lifeless at the foot of the Premiership table.
Head coach Cunningham, however, believes Saturday’s contest against Watsonians, who have similarly struggled in the early going of 2017, at Mansfield Park is a chance for Hawick to inject some life into their season and return respectability back into their Premiership campaign.
“Saturday is as close to a must-win without calling it a must-win,” he said.
“A win this weekend is very important if we are going to pick ourselves up from the canvas and get ourselves off the bottom of the Premiership table.
“With Watsonians coming it provides us with a chance to get ourselves back into the Premiership competition and also make life difficult for everyone else.”
The visit of Watsonians will also see the return of two former Greens stars. Rory Hutton, who spent 10-years at the club, and Stuart “biscuit” Graham, who signed for the Edinburgh outfit only last Friday, will suit up for the visitors, and Cunningham expects his charges to remind their former teammates what they are missing.
“If I’m honest, those boys coming back don’t really make any difference to how we are preparing for the game but I’m sure some of the boys are very keen to let them know what they think of their moves north,” he added.
“Rory left during the summer but Stuart was almost playing for us last weekend. I was a bit surprised last Friday when I was talking to him assuming he was being registered with us then I was told he had gone to Watsonians.
“At the end of the day boys can go where they want and I believe that if we play at our best for 60-70 minutes, we’ll win the game.”
Hawick are currently bottom of the table on four points, three points behind Watsonians who are in eighth position on seven points. Saturday’s match at Mansfield Park kicks off at 3pm.
Unbeaten BT Reserve Division two leaders, Hawick Force, are also in action at home on Saturday when they take on Musselburgh 2XV at Mansfield Haugh (3pm).