Thu 28 Nov 2019 17:40

This Saturday the 1st XV are on the road, heading to Oxfordshire to play Chinnor. 

Chinnor Rugby was formed in 1962 by regulars at the Bird in Hand pub, unfortunately now closed. They moved to rented fields in nearby Towersley and finally bought the current location in Thame adjacent to the Thame show ground in 1987 - the fact that one of their players was president of the show might have had something to do with it.

All three of their grounds are just in Oxfordshire on the border with Buckinghamshire - indeed Towersley was in Bucks until the borders were redrawn. Towersley is home to a Cotswold Morris side whose badge is the headless horseman - a ghost from the Civil War battle of Chalgrove Field.

Thame is a market town that grew up round a Cistercian Abbey. These days it is the corporate headquarters of Travelodge UK and a commuter town,sitting as it does just off the M40.

Chinnor gained promotion by winning the play-off in 2018. Last season we lost both matches by one and two points, so that is something we need to put right. Prior to that we played them for three seasons in National 2. We did win both games in our promotion year and split the results in the previous two seasons.

This season Chinnor have scored fewer points than Cambridge, conceded more points than us and chalked up fewer bonus points than we have. They also have had two draws, including last week at Plymouth. However,somehow they have six wins an four losses to our four and six - so they have seven more points than us and are sitting sixth in the table. But such are the fine margins this season.

We may see Blood and Sand old boy Tom Fiddler. Tom has recently earned international honours as he is representing Poland in the Rugby Europe REIC Trophy. That is the third tier of competition behind the Six Nations and the REIC Cup.

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