Morning everyone and welcome to our look at today’s National 2 South fixtures and what we can expect. The Chiefs will be making the long trip to Kent today to face a strong Canterbury side. This is going to be a tough ask for the Chiefs as Canterbury have had a good start this season, currently presiding in 5th place. Winning three of their games they have also collected three try bonus points in the process. Wins against Tonbridge and Old Reds on the road and Broadstreeet at home have given them a good foundation and the only team to beat them so far is the current leaders Cinderford.
And yet Barnstaple must get something out of this to help regain some composure and confidence going into our next 3 games where we are to face Clifton and London Irish at home with a trip to Henly sandwiched in-between. If we really want to be serious about this league these next three games are a must and what happens against Canterbury will go a long way to preparing the team for these games. First on the agenda is to get a grip of these penalties. Last week our inability to adjust to the refereeing cost us big as Bury were able to maintain the initiative. Penalties just snuffed out any chance of generating momentum and kept us on the back foot throughout most of the game.
This was the highlight of the Redruth game in that they, not us, kept giving away penalties that day and as such for the first 30 minutes of that game we were able to maintain the momentum we generated and put 17 unanswered points on the board. This meant that Redruth had to play catch up making life much harder for them. The reverse was what we experienced against Bury and it cost us dear as throughout the game we were playing catch up making it easier for them to turn over the ball as our play became more frantic.
Better discipling will give us better control of our own ball and with that will come points. I’m not expecting a win today but what we need is a good disciplined performance, something the lads can build on. Last year our visit to Canterbury bagged us two bonus points as we scored 4 tries, losing 38-32. We have the ability and the skills to put teams under pressure, its now about application.
To that end we welcome back to the team both Jordan Petherbridge and from his stint in the Caribbean Jarred Hayler. Troy Willis also starts today at 11. for the starting line up see below
The replacements for today are Kevin Angell, James Starkey, Winston James, Adam Lloyd and James Bath.
Elsewhere in the league the pick of the games must be Taunton v Redruth and although I would have Taunton favourites, I’m sure Redruth have a lot to say about that. Can Cinderford keep up their pace as they visit the Rams this week. This will be a test for them but no one really knows how the Rams are at home this season as they have only played once at Old Bath Rd so far. Clifton, Bury and Tonbridge should notch up wins and even though it will be tougher I expect Chinnor to beat Worthing but not by much.
Today see’s Barnstaple Athletic back at Pottington Road, kick off is 2.30 if you fancy it and today’s opponents are Cullumpton. I’m sure Scott Warren’s lads are eager to get a win today after losing to a very strong Ivybridge last weekend and today’s game should make for an interesting contest.
Don’t forget we have Boxing at the club tonight doors open at 7pm and the first bout is at 7.30. Entry is £10 on the door.
And finally it’s Clifton next weekend kick off is 2.30pm and I reckon this will be an awesome match so don’t miss it.