Maids v Newbury (away)

Maids v Newbury (away)

With a quarter of the season now gone, last week’s bonus point, 27-10 victory away at Weston-Super-Mare, propelled Maidenhead to 3rd position in the SW Premier table, sitting behind only Dings Crusaders and Newton Abbott. It’s been an enjoyable, challenging and educating start to life in the new division, but tomorrow we face off against old SW1 East friends, Newbury Blues, who were promoted via the playoffs to join Maids at level 5.

No doubt, the Berkshire rivals were the two standout teams last season, in a tough division, and the clashes between the sides were full of drama, excitement, ecstasy and agony, which saw them win one match apiece. New additions to the Blues squad this season include Adam Neal, from Oxford Quins and Rhys Davies from Windsor, whilst fly-half Richard West and back-row Finn Russell have both returned to the club after spells away.

Newbury will be satisfied with their start this season, sitting in 8th position after a brilliant opening day win away at Bournemouth, followed by home successes against Lydney and Hornets. They boast the meanest defence in the league, with just 105 points conceded, and enter the game after a close loss away at Camborne, which by all accounts, they could have nicked.

Maids will be enthused after their first away victory of the campaign a week ago, in which the first half saw them play arguably their best rugby of the season, starving Hornets of the ball for long periods, often reaching 10+ phases in attack. One of the players singled out for praise in the match, was hooker Mark Darlington, who we spoke to this week, to ask some deep and meaningful questions of…

*Name/nicknames- “Mark James Darlington”, “Darlo”, “Dark Marlington”, “Darlo no1”, “Skinny Sam Angell”, “Dutch Dave”.

*Position(s)- Hooker, prop, fly half. I play for Holland.

*Occupation- Market Research Recruiter/Andrew Darlington’s Guardian Angel/Dutch rugby legend.

*Which Maids teammate would you least like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? Sam Hallett- I have seen the way he smashes up the bus on away games; what chance would we have with our shelter or makeshift raft.

* Which Maids teammate would you most like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? Ryan Long; I feel his can-do attitude, positive energy and general all round happy approach to life would get me through some tough times on the island.

*What’s your favourite TV Programme? I mainly like watching videos of my games playing for Holland.

*What hobbies do you have outside of rugby? Mainly caring for my brother Andrew- helping him get dressed, brushing his teeth etc, and also monitoring Sam Angell’s sausage roll intake.

*If you could be any animal, what would you be and why? A bear. I’d roam around slowly, eating and hibernating- it’s pretty much what I do now.

*What would you like to achieve this season, both personally, and as a team? Finish top half of the table, keep improving and play for Holland. Did I mention I’m a Dutch International?

 

Tom King sadly misses out this week- knocking himself out whilst banging his head against the changing room wall last week, psyching himself up, whilst Jaryd Robinson still hasn’t finished drinking his initiation wine, so is sat on the coach next to Jockstrap John in his pants until it’s gone. Lewis ‘Pumba’ Jones celebrates his favourite day of the year today- the grand release of the Marks and Spencer’s Xmas sandwich, so Russell Bolton will be hoping he recovers in time for kick off. It’s also a big weekend for Max Roddick, who has a birthday party at Cheeky Charlie’s tomorrow, followed by trick or treating with Uncle Churchy on Monday night. Christoph Bart eagerly awaits the release of the Halloween Party guest list, composed by Ellie Birch, and will hope the menu provides plenty of novel options for the night, though ‘Mandingo Ali’ the physio, is likely to provide ‘stiff’ competition.

Maids team:

1.       M Parrott (c)

2.       M Darlington

3.       A Darlington

4.       S Hallett

5.       M Grimshaw

6.       L Leonard

7.       W Macaulay

8.       D Cole

9.       M Childerhouse

10.   P Jansen

11.   R Lewis

12.   E Keohane

13.   R Long

14.   S Prince

15.   W Runciman

16.   L Jones

17.   J Lavin

18.   G Blewitt

Come on you Maids!

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Maidenhead v Hornets (away)

Maidenhead v Hornets (away)

Following a well-earned week off, Maids resume their SW Premier campaign over at Weston-Super-Mare-based Hornets this Saturday, hoping to claim their first win on the road of the season. Hornets have endured a tough start so far, claiming a solitary victory and sit bottom of the table presently.

Russ Bolton gave his players a deserved night off training last Thursday, and he has been rewarded with an excellent response from his squad, which saw them enjoy two high-energy sessions this week, with nearly 50 players at both training nights. They head into this game with high hopes after overturning a 7-20 half time deficit against Ivybridge, to eventually pull away, and come out as 26-20 victors.

Although Maidenhead and Hornets have never met in league action before, the surroundings won’t be too unfamiliar, as Hornets ply their trade on a 3G pitch, which might come in handy if weather forecasts for Saturday are to be believed. Leading the home side, will be outside centre, Richard Dempsey, whilst player-coach Steve Pape will lead from the second row. Sonny Haines at tighthead will be tasked with providing a platform at scrum time, while the Maidenhead back 3 need to be wary of winger, Charlie Carter, who has scored plenty of points already this term.

For Maids this week, Jose the Tinkerman aka Russ Bolton has made some changes, including the return of fan’s (Mum’s/wives/girlfriend’s) favourite, Ed Keohane. He took a few minutes out from his busy wedding-planning schedule to answer a few questions…

*Name/nicknames- Ed, Eddie, Dreamboat, Tripod, Perfect Aryan, Greenwood Junior.

*Position(s)- 10/12/13/15 (whatever the dice rolls in selection).

*Occupation- Freelance Karaoke Teacher.

*Which Maids teammate would you least like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? Big Sammy Hallett- the sing off would get too intense, and when he gets drunk, he gets physical.

* Which Maids teammate would you most like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? PezDawg- we will make it work. Greens would leave the rest of the team and come and rescue us anyway.

*What’s your favourite TV Programme? ‘Don’t tell the Bride’ is a favourite at the moment, enjoy the inspiration it’s giving me.

*What hobbies do you have outside of rugby? Pretending to plan a wedding is pretty fun at the moment- I’m only doing it for the stag do, and then pulling the plug anyway. I love being abused by my younger brother Joe, in front of my proud Father, Ted, and also getting us banned from coach companies all over the South West.

*If you could be any animal, what would you be and why? I’d be a donkey- bottom half is there already.

*What would you like to achieve this season, both personally, and as a team? Cement a top 6 finish and wipe the floor with Bracknell and Newbury. Personally, do enough for Greens to leave me alone on a Sunday.

William Cadden returns from playing in the ‘Sandpit Crew’ league with Norway, and starts at number 8 for the 2nd XV against Abbey. He’ll line up alongside Player of the Month, Stevie Hyland, who was given his choice of 5 beautiful physios at training last night, as a reward for his efforts. Storm Brian has taken his first victim, blowing away Nic Jones’ shoulders, so he continues on the sidelines, alongside brother Laurence, who still can’t balance properly, after the big operation. Sammy Hallett’s latest roofing job, upon Harlequin Coaches has landed him in hot water with the Maids committee, so he has to sit and listen to Dicky Brown on the whole journey back as punishment. Sam Churchyard has travelled to New York to support ex-babysitter Harvey Weinstein, and takes new plaything Max Roddick for ‘support’. Rumours are growing as to the whereabouts of Fwankie, after Lynda bust out fabulous Thai curries in consecutive weeks, accompanied by the sounds of chains and groans from the kitchen, with Meeester Gaweth seen sneaking out the side door, with a mischievous smirk on his face. Scott Prince is back in therapy, after a severe regression in his behaviour this week, being caught placing cameras in his Aunt’s bedroom, but has been granted day release to join the squad for a few hours.

 

Maids team:

1.       M Parrott (c)

2.       M Darlington

3.       A Darlington

4.       L Leonard

5.       M Grimshaw

6.       T King

7.       W Macaulay

8.       D Cole

9.       M Childerhouse

10.   P Jansen

11.   J Robinson

12.   E Keohane

13.   R Long

14.   R Lewis

15.   W Runciman

16.   L Jones

17.   S Hallett

18.   S Prince

Come on you Maids!

Maidenhead v Ivybridge (home)

Maidenhead v Ivybridge (home)

Maidenhead welcome Devon-based Ivybridge to the Braywick Bowl this week, in possibly the first ever meeting between the 2 sides, if not, the first in a very long time. Ivybridge enter this game full of confidence, following 3 consecutive victories, including impressive away wins at our friends Newbury, and Lydney, who were our victors, 38-29, a week ago.

Maids are disappointed with their away form so far this term, and are fully aware that a change in mindset, and a tweak to the game plan is required, if they are to emulate home successes. However, they are delighted to be back on the familiar 3G territory, and confident of extending the proud home winning run. Consecutive 500+ crowds, buoyed by the Maidenhead Ultras haven’t been disappointed this campaign, and all the players are determined to continue entertaining and rewarding the many people of the town that have been coming to support.

Ivybridge are a somewhat unknown quantity to Maids, but player-coach Lewis Paterson, at outside centre is likely to be a threat, and inside him, Mitch and Billy Pinkus at 10 and 12 respectively will pull the strings. Scrum half Sean Disney, is a summer recruit from SW Prem rivals, Hornets, and he starts at 9 this week, with fellow scrum half, Ben Watts on the bench. Upfront, Matt Finn skippers from tighthead, and goes directly up against Maids captain, Parrott, whilst last week’s 2nd rows are missing, and replaced with Pete Abraham and Robin Luscombe moving up from the back row.

There are further changes in the Maids team this week, but one of the ever-presents this term, Will Runciman, starts at 12, so we caught up with him, to ask the new recruit some questions…

*Name/nicknames- Will, Runci, Willy, Run Simon, Runny Sperm, Terry, Carole Smillie.

*Position(s)-Fly half

*Occupation- Dodgy Accountant, helping Boughy and Dom rob the club’s money.

*Which Maids teammate would you least like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? Dark Marlington- I’m not sure how he’d react to the situation, and I’d fear for my life.

* Which Maids teammate would you most like to be stuck on a desert island with, and why? Sam Churchyard- we’d survive on his years’ supply of Puss milk- yummy.

*What’s your favourite TV Programme? Bottom, but the Vietnamese, Gary Glitter version.

*What hobbies do you have outside of rugby? Dom Birch is my current primary pastime. I’ve been studying his behaviour very closely over the past few months, and performing intricate pyscho-analysis on the complexities of his social and emotional interaction with peers and players alike, hoping to identify a chink in his armour. Sadly, no success yet, and he really does hate us. Also learning to play the piano.

*If you could be any animal, what would you be and why? I’d be a bedbug, so I could continue to piss off Perry, and make him get his wardrobe dry cleaned again.

*What would you like to achieve this season, both personally, and as a team? A top 4 finish would be great, and to learn the words to ‘A Little Respect’ off by heart.

After another impressive 1st XV performance last week, Lawrence Leonard has invited his family down for the weekend, and it is their caravans, currently occupying the carpark at the club. Tom King and Badger Bates thoroughly enjoyed their Thursday night tag-team street fight with the local travelling community, and have invited them to stay for a couple more weeks. Ed Keohane misses out this week, due to a karaoke competition in Skegness, but Jaryd Robinson returns to the starting lineup, after finalising the terms of his ‘home games only’ contract, with DoR, Tony Brooks. It’s a warm welcome back to Mark Childerhouse, who starts at scrum half after completing his fashion degree, and Lewis ‘Pumba’ Jones, will be looking to make an impact off the bench, despite the ‘inconvenient’ 3pm kick off time, falling straight on the time of his usual afternoon snack.

 

Ivybridge team:

1.       Jon Morgan

2.       Jay Geraty

3.       Matt Finn (c)

4.       Robin Luscombe

5.       Pete Abraham

6.       Aiden Taylor

7.       Marcus Prout

8.       Luke Richardson

9.       Sean Disney

10.   Mitch Pinkus

11.   Damon Ackerman

12.   Billy Pinkus

13.   Lewis Paterson

14.   Tom Scoles

15.   Charlie Briant

16.   Wes Vermigle

17.   Hayden Coles

18.   Ben Watts

Maids team:

1.       Myke Parrott (c)

2.       Mark Darlington

3.       Andy Darlington

4.       Sam Churchyard

5.       Sam Hallett

6.       Tom King

7.       Will Macaulay

8.       Dave Cole

9.       Mark Childerhouse

10.   Perry Jansen

11.   Jaryd Robinson

12.   Will Runciman

13.   Ryan Long

14.   George Blewitt

15.   Max Roddick

16.   Lewis Jones

17.   Lawrence Leonard

18.   Alex French

Come on you Maids!