Jan van Deventer has urged his Chester side to ‘hit the ground running’ when they they face Otley at Hare Lane on Saturday.

The Yorkshiremen are Chester’s first opponents of 2018, with home coach Deventer keen to see an improved second half to the season from his side.

Currently 10th in the Division Two North standings, Chester have lost nine of their 16 league games to date and have struggled for form.

Deventer has been left disappointed with their season to date and lamented the meagre three bonus points accrued by his side so far this season  – the worst return in the division.

Now the South African has called for his side to show their ruthless streak as they bid to climb the table.

He said: “Too often in games this season we’ve not capitalised on the good spells of pressure we’ve enjoyed against teams and we’ve been punished for that.

“We’ve allowed teams to chase us down from winning positions and we’ve come away empty handed, which is frustrating.

“The bottom line is that we haven’t scored enough tries this season and that lack of a ruthless edge to our game has cost us at times.

“Last season we showed that ruthless streak and played with more consistency to our game and those are two things we need to show more of in this second half of the season to improve our position.

“Otley are just below us in the standings and this is a chance for us to hit the ground running in our first game of the new year.”

League leaders Hinckley resume their impressive campaign at Leicester Lions, while second-placed Sale visit Sheffield Tigers.

Elsewhere Macclefield head to Blaydon, and basement side Wharfedale host Luctonians.