EPL: Hull Pirates confident ahead of Telford battle | Sheffield Steeldogs ready for Bison's on-rush

Forward Nathan Salem says Hull Pirates have plenty of confidence going into tonight's English Premier League clash at home to Telford Tigers.

Hull's Nathan Salem, left, in action during the 6-1 home loss to Peterborough

Hull’s already distant play-off hopes took a knock last weekend then when lost out 3-2 in Telford following a heavy 6-1 defeat to Peterborough.

They now lie 12 points adrift of Manchester Phoenix, the team sitting in the eighth and final play-off spot, but Salem believes there is still plenty to play for.

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“It wasn’t the best weekend because we got no points, but I thought that we played well against Telford,” said Salem, who moved to Hull from the Tigers in November.

“It’s given the boys a bit of a confidence boost to go into Telford and only lose 3-2 - the previous two times we were there, we conceded seven or eight goals.”

After hosting Telford, player-coach Dominic Osman takes his team on the road to face third-placed Peterborough.

Elsewhere, Sheffield Steeldogs will look to bounce back from one-goal defeats to Milton Keynes and Swindon last weekend when they visit Manchester tonight.

They follow that up 24 hours later by hosting leaders Basingstoke Bison, with Steeldogs defenceman Lewis Bell believing the encounter could turn a touch feisty.

In what has so far proved an even match up this season, Basingstoke chalked up early successes this season but it is Sheffield who hold the recent bragging rights with a 6-3 home win over Bison followed by a trip to Hampshire which produced a narrow 2-1 away win.

“We had a lively game with them last time out,” said Bell. “We are a tight-

knit team and we are looking forward to the game. It probably will have a physical edge to it, as they always do against the Bison. The game last time left a sour taste in some people’s mouths but we aren’t looking to start anything, we just want to play.

“But if people are coming to seek retribution we have guys who are willing to stand up and answer the bell”.