EBBW Vale are desperate to “get back on the horse” as quickly as possible following last weekend’s National Cup loss to Merthyr, according to head coach Greg Woods.

Woods’ men suffered an agonising 10-9 defeat against the holders, losing to a penalty try off the final play of the second-round tie at the Wern.

The Ironmen also knocked Ebbw out of the competition last season, again with a late try that broke Steelmen hearts.

Principality Premiership basement boys Neath are set to travel to Eugene Cross Park tomorrow (kick-off 2.30pm), and Woods is eager for his players to try and put the cup heartache behind them.

“We were hurting very badly,” he said. “It’s just a tough one to take. I thought we controlled the game well and played the best we have against them.

“We let them into our 22 in injury-time and couldn’t get out. The pressure told, they were awarded the penalty try, and they didn’t even have to take the conversion.

“It was much harder to take than last year because we felt we played much better this time – it was a pretty sombre dressing room afterwards.”

He added: "It hasn’t been tough to pick the boys up.

“On the bus ride home, we spoke about how we couldn’t get knocked out of two competitions in a week, because if we lose to Neath we’ll be out of the title race.

“It’s a huge game and I’m glad it’s at home. We’ve got to get back on the horse as quickly as we can and win to stay in the race.

“The boys are desperate to play after a loss like that and they want to reward the fans who were magnificent at Merthyr.”

Prop Chris Coleman (shoulder) won’t be involved tomorrow after a bump at Merthyr.

Neath, whose future now seems safe after Mike Cuddy relinquished control of the club, lost the reverse fixture 25-17.