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WESTERN STARS TO FACE EASTERN RIVALS - if you are missing your Rugby League fix in the South check out Corsham RU on Sunday 30th October, 2.30pm

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Bragging rights will be at stake when the West and East of England representative Rugby League sides do battle this weekend.


 


Having lost two games against Welsh sides, the improving West of England team will be going all-out for victory in their first fixture against English opposition.


 


When the East of England side pitch up at Corsham RFC on Sunday, October 30 (kick-off 2.30pm), they’ll face a battle-hardened West squad keen to build on the good work done in previous outings.


 


West of England Head Coach Glenn Tyreman said: “Sunday’s game will be another difficult test, but I expect to see the team do well. We’ve improved markedly since we first got together in August, through playing and training as a team. The quality has always been there, it just takes time to gel as a team and learn the system. I expect the squad to put in an impressive performance against their Eastern rivals”.


 


Tyreman has announced a strong 21-man squad for the fixture. As with previous games, it features players selected from a large number of West of England League clubs. These include 2016 Grand Finalists Swindon St George, 2016 Plate winners Oxford Cavaliers, 2015 Champions Bath & Wiltshire Romans, and the West’s oldest community club, Gloucestershire Warriors.


 


The squad also boasts representatives from Bristol Sonics, Cheltenham Phoenix, Forest Bulldogs and Southampton Spitfires.


 


Formed earlier this season by volunteers from within the community game, the West of England side offers an opportunity for talented Rugby League players from the region’s community clubs to test their skills against quality opposition.


 


Rugby fans from the region are encouraged to come and cheer on their representative side when they take to the field on Sunday. Entrance to the game at Corsham RFC is free.


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A win for the Beasts from the Easts I believe.  

 

Hope it was a good game!


With the best, thats a good bit of PR, though I would say the Bedford team, theres, like, you know, 13 blokes who can get together at the weekend to have a game together, which doesnt point to expansion of the game. Point, yeah go on!

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34-4 to East.  East took a thirty-point lead in the first half, though the second was a closely-fought 4-4.

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WEST OF ENGLAND            4


T: PJ Muldowney


 


EAST OF ENGLAND            36


T: Will O’Brien 2, Seb Ward, Jack Saunders, Scott Aspinall, Callum Whitcombe, Nathan Thomas


C: Lee Walker 4 (from 7)


 


The East of England produced a dominant first half performance to set up victory over an improving West of England side at Corsham RFC.


 


Four tries in the opening 20 minutes put the East side on course for victory, as the West of England side were made to pay for a mixture of indiscipline and individual errors. While the home side rallied in the second period, the visitors’ defended impressively to notch up an impressive 4-36 win.


 


The West was on the back foot almost from the first kick of the game. A number of early indiscretions caught the eye of referee Stuart Orton, giving the East a chance to attack deep in West territory. They ruthlessly took advantage after four minutes, with right-winger Will O’Brien diving over following some quick passing. Scrum half Lee Walker slotted over the conversion, the first of four successful attempts.


 


With the West struggling to hold on to the ball on the rare occasions they had it, the East found themselves with plenty of opportunities to attack. On nine minutes they crossed the whitewash again, replacement forward Seb Forward driving over with his first touch of the ball.


 


10 minutes later the visitors had extended their lead to 22 points. First, full-back Scott Aspinall touched down a hack forward from winger O’Brien, before the East brilliantly turned defence into attack to score their fourth try of the afternoon. When an attacking kick from the West went dead in goal, a quick tap restart from East hooker Nathan Thomas set up the chance for left-winger Jack Saunders to finish off a speedy, 80-metre move.


 


The home side began to get a little more of the ball, but could not take advantage of the occasional attacking opportunities that came their way. Their forwards struggled to make an impact against the East’s well-organised defence, while too many passes to the backs went astray.


 


They were made to pay for these lapses before half time. After 29 minutes, a 40-metre break from East hooker Nathan Thomas was finished off by centre Callum Whitcombe. Then, with half time just seconds away, Will O’Brien picked up his second try of the afternoon after catching a speculative offload from a marauding teammate. Walker’s fine conversion put the East of England side 32-0 up at the interval.


 


Having been given a stern talking too by their coaches at half time, the West of England came out firing early in the second half. Their completion rate rose considerably, and they began to cause their opponents far more problems. Defensively they tightened up, too, setting up a much closer context.


 


The home side finally got some reward for their efforts after 55 minutes, when centre PJ Muldowney finished off a fluid left-to-right passing move. Sadly, Ashley Lewis couldn’t convert.


 


The game remained even for the rest of the contact, with both sides missing good opportunities to score. Stand-in full-back Jonny Mawer twice came to the West of England’s rescue in the closing minutes, before Nathan Thomas finally crossed for the East with four minutes remaining. It completed an impressive win for the visitors.


 


TEAM LINE-UPS


 


WEST OF ENGLAND RL


1. Ashley Lewis


2. Ashley Perry


3. Jonny Mawer


4. PJ Muldowney


 


5. Kai Phillips


6. Tom Plance


7. James Deal


8. Ben Brinkworth


9. Tom Jones


10. Ashley Stokes


11. George Cowley


12. Dean Cooper


13. Rob Webb


 


Interchange (all used)


14. Joe Knight


15. Rob Wilson


16. Byron Edwards


17. George Hall


18. Tom Culshaw


 


EAST OF ENGLAND RL


1. Scott Aspinall


2. Will O’Brien


3. Ollie Fountain


4. Callum Whitcombe


5. Jack Saunders


6. Ben Kavanagh


7. Lee Walker


8. Aaron Higgs


9. Nathan Thomas


10. Sam Richbell


11. Lloyd Pullen


12. Lewis Hall


13. Rob Ashton


 


Interchange (all used)


14. Ryan Campbell-Webster


15. Tom Reeman


16. Karl Swidak


17. George Wood


18. Seb Ward


 


Referee: Stuart Orton


 


Kindly supplied by Matt Anniss


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A win for the Beasts from the Easts I believe.  

 

Hope it was a good game!

 

One sided in the first half, with the East lads capitalising on quite a few West errors (dropped ball, missed tackles) and indiscipline. The West guys played much better in the second half and it was a very even game. Plenty to build on in coming matches. The East fully deserved their victory, all in all - looks like a decent side in the making.


Bristol Sonics Rugby League

2007 & 2008 West Midlands RLC Champions

2008 RLC Regional Grand Finalists

2008 RLC Team Of The Year

2011 RLC Midlands Premier Champions

www.bristolsonics.com

� Stupid Questions League Winner 2004 �

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Is this competition going to be regular thing and is it involving all the regions? Great concept if it is and extends the playing season for plenty of lads.

 

GeordieSaint,

 

My personal ambition would be to play a number of regional fixtures in the period mid-September (on completion of the Harry Jepson Competition) to February, possibly more in the period before Christmas as the weather is likely to be slightly better, then arrange a tour in March before pre-season.

 

On other threads there has been talk of the lack of development officers in the south, but the West of England side has been set up by volunteers involving just about all clubs in the league. Each club were asked to put 5 players forward to the squad from different positions and have a squad of circa 40 players so not necessarily the best players in the league playing every game, but the intention is to ensure they all play a couple of games and get the chance to impress the coaching staff with the best 20ish offered the opportunity to go on tour in March.

 

The coaching staff is drawn from Swindon St. George, Southampton Spitfires and Somerset Vikings, the management staff from Bath & Wiltshire Romans, Oxford Cavaliers, Swindon St. George, media support from Gloucester Warriors and Bristol Sonics and kit man from Oxford Cavaliers. 

 

We have now set up a number of fixtures using Corsham RU as home ground starting of with South Wales Scorpions Development side at home, then the Wales Presidents 13 away @ Blackwood RU and more recently the East region at home. The side have been fairly well beaten in all games but the ethos is about giving players an opportunity and not necessarily about winning games, the tour is the pinnacle to select the best side to win, we believe other sides have been playing their strongest squad and have a different ethos. We would like to play the East again and possibly the Midlands, along with a fixture against an RAF side before deciding the touring squad. 

 

I believe the East have a couple of volunteers who have arranged their squad, in future it would be nice to organise some fixtures against other regions for those who want to play but this might be a case for doing something slightly different to the heartland areas in order to develop the game and start to entice players to prioritise rugby league to a greater extent.

 

While arguably the sport in the south and other development areas could do with some investment, it needs to be sensible and sustainable investment, if areas want a development officer, what do they want them to do?

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