Matt was asked whether he wanted to go first but held off, so Pete starting the predictions off.
Melbourne welcome Ilkeston to Cockshut. 3 weeks off and the injuries should be rested for the squad. Melbourne won well at Ilkeston. No predictions as usual.
On to the other fixtures which as usual bring up some interesting ties. The middle of the table remains incredibly tight with only 8 points separating 2nd-9th. The weather has been very dry and pitches should generally be in good condition.
Ashbourne v Ashby
Ashbourne sitting 4th with a game in hand and despite their early season loss at Ashby, Pete feels that this should be a comfortable home win, with a bonus point too. Having had a severe injury and a ban to a key front row ashby will travel not at full strength. Matt predicts an easy win for Ashbourne
Matlock v Lincoln
Lincoln are still struggling on the road and Matlock is a tough place to go any week. Pete can see another home bonus point win here and Matt agrees.
Newark v Dronfield
A heavy weight clash here. Both sides have had a month off. Dronfield won at Market Rasen last time out, Newark beat an improving Southwell. Pete sees a close game with home advantage playing a part for a Newark win. Matt differs in this game and sees the powerful Dronfield nudging the encounter in a close affair.
Market Rasen v Long Eaton
Another tough call. 2nd v 3rd. Both sides have drawn at Ilkeston pre-Christmas. Market Rasen won comfortably at Long Eaton but have stuttered a little. Quite a trip for Long Eaton so home advantage may hold the key here. Pete going for Rasen in a close game. Long Eaton suffered a shock loss and will be looking to re-establish their form but a long away trip may see them struggle and they are missing their big inside Centre and influential fullback despite the return of Jacob Wright from uni. Will be a close affair but Matt believes Rasen will edge it.
Southwell v Loughborough
4 weeks ago, it would have been Loughborough all the way. However Southwell have improved and picked up an impressive win against Long Eaton, albeit in very different conditions. Loughborough edged a high scoring game at home but are still to win on the road. Home advantage to tell and Pete predicting a home win in a tight game. Matt favours Loughborough in this game as confidence often edges results and he sees that being the difference.
Updated 13:36 - 6 Jan 2019 by Peter Ilott