The last time the teams met Ealing made a winning start to 2014 by scoring three tries in a 28-27 victory at Meadow Lane, while the most recent time they played at Vallis Way they secured their second win of the season against long-time rivals Jersey, 25-23.
Since Jersey visited W13 Mike Cudmore’s side also picked up a highly welcome bonus point away to league leaders Bristol Rugby when Tom Parker wiggled over with the final play of the match.
“We want to carry on with what we did against Jersey,” Preocanin said. “It will keep our season alive, so it is a must win game and very important for us and very important for them as well.
“We got a good bonus point away to Bristol and you always look at the positives. We conceded a few points, but we didn’t fixate on that and we worried about getting the bonus point, because that is what we wanted out of the game.”
When Ealing met Nottingham in January two Ronnie McLean tries and one from Phil Chesters in the first half set them up for their win in the east midlands, before stout defence in the second half and a Ben Ward penalty completed the job.
Three of Nottingham’s tries that day came through their captain Brent Wilson scoring from the back of rolling mauls from lineouts.
While they may have gone over three times from such a tactic, Ealing’s defence stopped just as many and even though it should come as no surprise that a team coached by ex-England and Bath second row forward Martin Haag is likely to be strong upfront, Preocanin is under no illusion that the team cannot ignore the threat their backline possesses.
“It was disappointing the last game because three out of their four tries came from their rolling maul, so that is an area we are looking at and we can do better this week and one of our big aims is to do that,” he said.
“We all enjoy playing in the sun a bit more and it suits our style and we like to throw it around and run teams around, but Nottingham like to play quite wide as well. They have a big strong pack and one of the strengths is their maul, but they do like to go wide and they have some fast guys on the wing, so you can’t discount those threats as well.”