RUGBY UNION: Crunch time for Chinnor
CHINNOR head coach Jason Bowers says his players must not look beyond tomorrow’s National 3 South West clash at home to Chippenham (2.30).
Victory over Chippenham would guarantee Chinnor a home promotion play-off against either Ampthill or Tonbridge Juddians.
But Bowers warned they cannot let their minds drift to that showdown when they face a more immediate threat.
“Last week at Newton Abbot was a tough fixture for us, but this week will be a different challenge,” said Bowers.
“We have not played them since September (when Chinnor won 50-15) and a lot has changed since then.
“They have strengthened and have brought in a couple of good back row players and a strong winger. We’ll not underestimate them.
“We can’t look beyond this week. That would be counter-productive.
“We have got to keep our heads down and play well.”
Centres Sam Stoop and Matt Goode, plus flanker Adam Hastings could return.
No 8 Ollie Rees and wing Frank Mayfield come into the Oxford Harlequins team to host champions Bourne-mouth.
Nick Gardner, who filled in on the wing last week, reverts to blindside flanker.
Rees replaces Alex Powell, while Charlie Sammut is on international duty with Malta.
Quins coach Tony Edney, whose side are now safe, said: “We are just looking forward to the game.
“The pressure is off both sides now. Hopefully, we can make it a good spectacle.”
Henley Hawks have made four changes to their pack for the trip to National 2 South basement boys Barnes.
Alec Hepburn, Ed Church and Jim Hadfield replace Hugo Milford-Scott, Ant Brennan and Alex Penny in the front row, while Ben Ashmore comes in at blindside flanker.
Matt Payne moves from No 6 to partner James Winterbottom at lock.
Wing Aaron Lambourne, prop Alan Richens and lock Joe Rowles come into the Witney side to visit already-relegated Olney in South West 1 East.
Victory could see Witney achieve a top-five finish – a new high for the club.
Henley Hawks (v Barnes, away): Allen (capt), Perry, James, Wells, Baggett, Comben, Gaunt, Hepburn, Church, Hadfield, Winterbottom, Payne, Ashmore, Newman, Woodward. Reps: Milford-Scott, Bigley, Penny, Emmett, Haynes.
Chinnor (v Chippenham, home): from Chase, Seymour, Woodhouse, Colver, Powell, Goode, Stoop, Gray, Cathcart, Jones, Winpenny (capt), Tattersall, Pickett, Whelan, Jackman, Smith, Harrison, Mowbray, Waddingham, Hastings, Gilbert.
Oxford Harlequins (v Bournemouth, home): Nutt, Jones, Jelly, Tevita, Mayfield, Smith, Cosins, Steventon, Chadbone (capt), Hall, Brown, Forde, Gardner, Vaiom’ounga, Rees. Reps: from Edney, Powell, Farahani, Pepiol.
Witney (v Olney, away): Gouldie, Lambourne, J Lamb, Murton, Monks, H Lamb, G Campbell, Burke, Todd, Richens, Bennett, Rowles, Muller, C Campbell, J Hicks (capt). Reps: Fuller, Haire, Strutt.