With just 7 games left of this campaign, the race for that much-coveted play-off place is seriously hotting up, with another round of ‘juicy’ fixtures set to further shape this rollercoaster of a season. Barring a catastrophic collapse which nobody can foresee, Bournemouth now have the title well and truly wrapped up, and will deservedly go up as Champions, but competition to stay in this division at the bottom end of the table is fierce, and Maids have Ivybridge hot on their tails, with Barum 7 points ahead of them, in the fight for 2nd.

After Barnstaple dropped points, with a loss away at Drybrook a week ago, and now facing the prospect of a dangerous Exeter University side this week, Maids will be hoping to bridge that 7 point gap ahead of welcoming their North-Devon rivals to Braywick on March 23rd. However, standing in their way, is the formidable opponent of Weston Super-Mare RFC, who have been the only side to leave Braywick this season with a win. Despite sitting in 9th position in the table, Maids know that Weston well and truly had their number earlier in the season, yet both number 8 Brad Talbot, and loosehead prop, Sam Coles, who were outstanding that day, miss this return fixture through injury. They are replaced by youngsters Tom Sugg and Charlie Brabham respectively, the latter of whom has recently featured in some A League fixtures for Bristol.

For Maids, hooker Mark Darlington returns to the squad after recovering from his papercut, meaning new recruit Sam Rawsthorne drops to the bench. He wasn’t too downbeat however, when he was given the opportunity to feature in this weeks’ high-in-demand match preview…

Name- Sam Rawsthorne

Nickname(s)- ‘Travis’, ‘Rawsy’, ‘Sub’, ‘Mark Bosnich’, ‘Bozzy’, ‘Lavin Mark II’, ‘Sandpit Sam’.

Position(s)- Bench

Occupation- I make coffee for Andy Berry, and clean his shoes.

Weaknesses- Fully answering questionnaires, IQ, ascertaining my nationality, my accent, following instructions, common sense.

Strengths- my girlfriend, making sandcastles, asking people how their day has been.

If you could be any of your teammates, who would you be and why? I’d be Andy Berry, so I could have my own personal PA for both work and rugby too.

Which teammate would you least like to have over for dinner? Ryan Long- he’s already added my Mrs on Facebook. It’s always how it starts.

What hobbies do you have outside of rugby? Upon my return from Australia, I’ve recently joined UKIP and the National Front with Tom King, so I’m really enjoying bashing up anti-Brexit protestors and soft lefties on my free weekends.

Tell us something we don’t know about you- I was the one who left the speaker out in the rain last week.

What are your aspirations for this season? Get a start, get promoted, move in with Andy Berry.

 

Ahead of his maiden bus trip for the first team, young Ed Atkins was unfortunate enough to be papped on the tube with some roses, 3 minutes after excusing himself from training last night, so he will be looking forward to 3 hours of drinking from Jockstrap John’s ball sack on the way home tomorrow, whilst Charlie Broughton’s initiation has rolled over yet another week, and he climbs to number 1 contender for Puss of the Week, with a prize of a lovely t-shirt and some cat milk beckoning.

Ed Atkins ‘couldn’t make training’ last night…

Niall Crosley will be hoping to take his place in the centre after recovering from his annual Valentine’s beating from his Mrs, but Andy Berry misses out sadly- he was pictured with Rolf Harris wandering around Oldfield school last week, so has an appointment with the Maidenhead Constabulary.

On the coaching front, Mark Bates has this week had to cancel his family summer holiday to France with his access to the country abruptly denied following his assault on 22 French Vets last weekend, whilst Zoran Higgins has been banned indefinitely from future coach trips by the Club Committee, in the aftermath of complaints of nakedness and lewd behaviour from 17 different cars on the M4 last Saturday night, as well as Burger King staff, the owner of Premier Coaches and the toilet attendant from Weston Service station.

 

Congratulations to Will Macaulay, who wins his 50th 1st XV cap this weekend, a fine feat for the 45 year old flanker.

 

Maids team (caps in brackets)

1.       M Parrott (c) (198)

2.       M Darlington (34)

3.       A Darlington (36)

4.       S Churchyard (92)

5.       L Leonard (40)

6.       T Muil (16)

7.       W Macaulay (50)

8.       D Cole (35)

9.       P Jansen (89)

10.   W Runciman (34)

11.   D Baptista (9)

12.   C Broughton (7)

13.   N Crosley (18)

14.   S Prince (45)

15.   O Foxley (13)

16.   S Rawsthorne (10)

17.   E Atkins (2)

18.   A French (21)

 

Weston team:

1.       C Brabham

2.       M Hocking

3.       O Streeter

4.       A Glen

5.       C Kingscott

6.       S Fisher

7.       R Bignell

8.       T Sugg

9.       R Bennett

10.   J Mackay

11.   M Watkins

12.   G Dickson

13.   M Nel

14.   A Howman

15.   R Mackay

16.   A Fisher

17.   G Bamsey

18.   H Jones

Come on you Maids!

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