KEIGHLEY play the first of 12 scheduled Yorkshire Division One derby fixtures this season on Saturday – but not on their new artificial grass pitch (AGP).

That was due to be laid on Monday in time for the visit of Bradford Salem this weekend, but weather delays mean the earliest first-team game it could be ready for is the clash with Heath on September 30.

The Salem clash will take place on the second-team natural grass pitch and remains very much a contest to look forward to between keen rivals.

Salem, who had to cancel a training session on the new pitch last night, have mirrored Keighley's results this season, losing 25-18 at Hullensians on the first weekend before seeing off visitors Moortown 23-3 last Saturday, while Keighley went down 36-21 at Scarborough before triumphing 17-14 at Selby.

Keighley's director of rugby Russell Gibson said: "Salem had a very good result at the weekend and it should be a good contest.

"Not playing on the AGP is a little bit of a disruption, but not much as we play on grass the rest of the time anyway.

"However, although we won last weekend and gave an improved display, we are not firing on all cylinders."

Keighley hope to have three-quarters Alfie Seeley (knee) and Jack Atkinson (ankle) back in the mix, and must decide whether to throw experienced back-rower Hamish Pratt in from the start.

But Gibson said: "I don't know whether Hamish's legs will last 80 minutes, and he brings so much as an impact player off the bench."

Keighley also have injury doubts over Shaun Minikin (shoulder), centre Adam Horsfall (hamstring) and Stuart Inman (knee), and they have others who are likely to play but are carrying knocks.

Keighley RUFC's chairman Sam Griffin, meanwhile, admitted that it will be a push to get the AGP ready for the end of the month.

He said: "It has been delayed by the weather as it has to be bone dry for the last two layers to be put down.

"Then it has to be tested by a laboratory and the results sent back to the RFU, who then have to give it the okay.

"Then we can use it but others can't until we get an international certificate."