JON Higgins says injury-ravaged Dudley Kingswinford must dig deep to end any lingering relegation fears.

The player-coach admits his side cannot assume they are safe after last Saturday’s 51-9 defeat at Hull.

Westoe’s win over Stockport narrowed the gap between DK and the bottom three in National Two North to 13 points, with a tough home game with title-chasing Hull Ionians next up this Saturday.

DK’s cause has not been helped by a raft of injuries to key players including fellow player-coach Pete Knight, while Josh Buggea and Sam Pedley are among a number of those struggling in the pack.

Higgins said: “We can’t relax, we know the job isn’t done.

“We still have to play two of the sides below us but there is no way we can start to think we are safe.

“That said, I would still rather be in our position than the teams below us.

“We’ve got a number of players out injured and pretty much everyone is carrying bumps and bruises.

“It’s backs against the wall stuff but it’s exactly the way we expected it to be when we were promoted.

“We’ve really got to grit our teeth and dig deep.”

Higgins had no complaints over the result at Hull, where he admitted his side were simply “over-powered.”

However, he says Ionians would be unwise to disregard DK in a game which will be eagerly watched by Stourbridge, who the visitors are chasing at the top of the table.

DK stunned high-flying Darlington Mowden Park back in January at Heathbrook and Higgins claims a repeat performance cannot be ruled out.

He said: “It’s going to be a big ask but it’s do-able, as we showed against Darlington.

“We are just the kind of side who can turn over one of the big sides on our own turf with a one-off performance.

“It’s what makes us such a frustrating team to coach in many ways.”