College Boys In Town
By Blues Ed
October 26 2018
A tough test this week after the exertions against the Pirates. Hartpury College, so closely tied to Gloucester, have picked up and one wonders what would every happen if they get promoted to the Premiership.
That's some way off as they're still in second bottom place.
We make a few changes with Ed Coulson replacing Jamie Elliot and Lee Dickson returns as skipper. In the froint row Ben Cooper starts and in the back row Huw Worthington is at blindsideand Jarad Williams at No.8.
Blues: 15. Rich Lane 14. Ryan Hutler 13. Ed Coulson 12. Lewis Robling 11. Dean Adamson 10. Will Hooley 9. Lee Dickson (captain) 1. Sean McCarthy 2. Jacob Fields 3. Ben Cooper 4. Will Carrick-Smith 5. Mark Flanagan 6. Huw Worthington 7. Josh Buggea 8. Jarad Williams
Reps: Tadgh McElroy, Gerard Ellis, Alex Penny, Ed Taylor, Oli Curry, Alex Gliksten, Harry Daviespqs: qs:
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Hartpury have named a heavily re-shuffled side for tomorrow’s visit to Bedford Blues, as they respond to injury and unavailability.
The good news is that experienced players Luke Eves (centre) and Mat Gilbert (back row) have recovered sufficiently to be named, having been considered doubtful earlier in the week.
The front row of Murphy, Tanner and Harden has a settled look, although there is a surprise in the second row, where former Hartpury student and RFC player, Harry Casson, lines up alongside skipper Simon Linsell. Casson – who last played for Hartpury in National League 2 several seasons ago – has arrived on an emergency loan move from Ealing Trailfinders.
With Rob Fuller, Joe Quinn, Alex Craig and last week’s MOTM Ehize Ehizode all unavailable to Hartpury through injury or other reasons, the arrival of Casson provides a welcome and much-needed resource in this department.
James Stephenson and Tom Pashley join Gilbert to form the breakaway unit.
Luke Cozens renews his partnership with Richard Bolt at fly-half, with Sam Leeming stepping out to centre, alongside Eves. Ed Shelford is in for the injured Jake Henry on the wing, joining Ben Foley and Mike Wilcox in the back three.
The bench has a youthful look. Robbie Smith – son of former Gloucester and Scotland flanker, Ian – provides cover for the outside backs and is in line for his Championship debut following his involvement in the big BUCS Super Rugby win, at Durham, on Wednesday. Smith is a first year undergraduate who has returned to Hartpury this season, having previously figured in AASE rugby.
Another student from Wednesday’s win, back row forward Harry Wilson, also steps up to the Championship for the first time. Wilson, a former Gloucester Academy player, was involved in the successful BUCS-winning teams of 2017 and 2018.
Two further undergraduates, Alex Gibson and Angus Southon, are others to double-up from the Durham match, while recent graduates Luke Stratford and Harry Cochrane complete the line-up.
Saturday’s game at Goldington Road kicks off at 3pm and is the last Championship fixture before Christmas, as the new Championship Cup takes over for the next several weeks.
Yesterday there were no supporters, no directors or club officers, no presence. In this respect they bring nothing to the spirit of club rugby in the Championship. Heaven knows what it must be like to visit them as an away club supporter.
That said, one cannot but admire the terrific squad unity - the noise from the pitch and their benches demonstrated real commitment to one another. They are a much better side than their current position suggests. Bear in mind that Hartpury currently have as big, if not bigger, injury list as Bedford.
That they should have lost out yesterday by that unfortunate kick at the death was to have let Bedford off the proverbial hook.
Highlights from yesterday and a post match interview with Mark Flanagan
Lets hope Bedford improve or its going to be a very long season.
The loss of Ocampo and Clare hasn't helped the scrum. Clare makes a huge difference with his scrummaging ability.
Coulson also looked a lot more of a threat than Elliott.
Hooley's kicking seems to have improved as well and has been vital the last couple of games.
"Interesting" performance from Sir, we were dominating the scrum 2nd half winning penalty after penalty, then he inexplicably gives them three on the trot which got them up the field for their final shot at goal, which fortunately for us went wide.