It’s back to home comforts for Maidenhead this week, as newly-promoted Banbury visit the Braywick Bowl, aiming to knock the Berks Boys off top spot. Maids reached the summit of South West 1 in style, following the derby demolition at Windsor last week, prevailing 45-13. Despite this, Maids will be disappointed the winning margin wasn’t bigger- leading 45-8 with over 15 mins left, they should have turned the screw, instead taking their foot off the gas, conceding a late score to their rivals.
Banbury visit Braywick, off the back of their own derby, which saw them lose out to Oxon neighbours Grove, which they lost at home, 36-28. However, James Kerr’s side are not to be taken lightly, and have already illustrated that they are a dangerous side- winning away at Chippenham, and losing narrowly, away to Witney. They will be led by Ian Isham, who starts at loose head, whilst fellow prop Manuel Paniagua misses out through injury, so is replaced by Cash Chilvers. Influential fly half, Sam Stoop returns to the side, but centre, Matt Goode, is still unavailable through injury.
Maids have the fortune of an almost fully-fit squad to choose from this week, and it’s fair to say, that Russ Bolton has never had such squad depth. Bolstered by various summer signings, competition for places is fierce, and there will no doubt be players not involved this week, who will be feeling frustrated, and keen to return. One player that has decided to come back home to Braywick, after a spell in Nat 2, with Redingensians, is scrum half Jack Hill (pictured above), who we caught up with this week…
*Occupation? Teacher/Personal Trainer
*Position? Scrum half
*Former clubs? Redingensians
*Biggest rugby achievement to date? Winning the national u20 county championship at Twickenham, with Berkshire.
*Favourite food? Curry
*Dream woman/man? Jennifer Anniston/Adam Hill
*Which Maids teammate would you least like to be stuck in a lift with, and why? Myke Parrott, because of his bad toilet habits (at the time of going to press, Jack hadn’t yet experienced Sam Churchyard and Mark Childerhouse’s extrovert toilet etiquette).
*What do you want to achieve this season? Win the league
Tom Finnie returns to the starting XV this week, after Russ Bolton gave him compassionate leave, for Bake Off leaving the BBC, whilst Myke Parrott will begin on the bench, due to his poor try-scoring form. Keohane starts his first match since returning to Braywick, in the 12 shirt, and Umar ‘what’s up blood’ Marriott earns his first start. Rorie Hannigan is concussed, after his involvement in the Honeypot scandal last night, documented in the Advertiser, but Ryan Long came through unscathed, as he was behind a curtain at the time. He will take the captaincy this week, in Parrott’s absence.
1/ L Jones, 2/ N Jones, 3/ Marriott, 4/ Churchyard, 5/ White, 6/ Cadden, 7/ Macauley, 8/ Long (c), 9/ Hill, 10/ Jansen, 11/ O’Keeffe, 12/ Keohane, 13/ Bart, 14/ Heron, 15/ Finnie, 16/ Parrott, 17/ Meek, 18/ Childerhouse
1/ Isham, 2/ O’Dwyer, 3/ Chilvers, 4/ Burge, 5/ Brock, 6/ Mills, 7/ Anderson, 8/ Phillips, 9/ Deegan, 10/ Stoop, 11/ Daniels, 12/ Briggs, 13/ Manly, 14/ Titchener, 15/ Mills, 16/ Kay, 17/ Harden, 18/ Gandy
Come on you Maids!