Peter Gavin previews Clifton v Raiders

Clifton RFC v Worthing Raiders
2nd November 2019
Kick-off 2.30pm

Raiders take to the road again this week heading down to Bristol to take on our old friends and rivals Clifton RFC. This will be our tenth visit to their base at the end of Cribbs Causeway.

Clifton history.
Clifton RFC was founded in1872 and is the 22nd oldest club in England. The founding meeting took place at ‘The Kings Arms’ on Blackboys Hill in Clifton. The pub is still there although it has been rebuilt and changed name a few times. It is now The Kings Arms again! The club has played at a number of different locations throughout North Bristol, but never apparently in Clifton itself. Since1976 the club has been based at the southerly end of Cribbs Causeway.

This historic club has a considerable number of ex-international players who have donned Clifton colours, especially in the earlier days, there is a website specifically devoted to the subject (cliftonrfchistory).

The club has links with Gloucester Academy.
The club turns out 2 or 3 Senior XVs on Saturdays, Junior/Mini Rugby taking over on Sundays.
In 2009 Clifton Ladies RFC became affiliated to Bristol Rugby.
Club Colours: Lavender/Black Jerseys, black stockings/shorts
Club Motto: Dum Ludimus Ludamus…’While we play let us play’

Worthing v Clifton over the years……. (series Raiders 9 Clifton 9)
Clifton were promoted to level 4 after season 2005-6 having defeated favourites Richmond at the Athletic Ground 3-12 (3 drop goals from John Barnes) in a play-off match. They lasted a couple of seasons at that level, before reappearing after Season 2008-9 as South West 1 Champions.

The results (and final league positions) in the series between the clubs are:

2009-10: C55 W18 / W20 C27 / W 6th C 5th
2010-11: C10 W9 / W37 C30 / W 8th C 9th
2011-12: C8 W28 / W54 C10 / W 3rd C 9th
2012-13: C21 W38 / W58 C3 / W 2nd C 12th
2013-14: No fixture Raiders promoted to level 3
2014-15: C34 W40 / W24 C17 / W 5th C 13th
2015-16: C31 W18 / W34 C33 / W 11th C 12th
2016-17: C33 W17 / W11 C15 / W12th C 10th
2017-18: C34 W36 / W24 C36 / W7th C11th
2018-19: C37 W15 / W29 C49 / W9th C6th

22nd September 2018 Clifton 37 Raiders 15                                                                                                                                                                       Raiders and their supporters travelled to Bristol buoyed by the scintillating victory the previous Saturday against Redruth. The perfect Clifton pitch looked just the ticket for another 10 try display…..Back to earth with a bump, as prop forward Alex Giltrow crossed inside the first minute! It was one of those days when there were glimpses of what might have been, but in the event the home side held the aces, frustration set in and yellow cards followed. Off the bench, Alfie To’oala, the villain last season after a red card, turned to hero as he engineered a couple of tries off the back of rolling mauls to get a five-pointer for the home side. Curtis Barnes added a consolation try for the visitors at the death.

Clifton: Leversley, Lambert, Halpin, Campbell, Pomphrey, Barnes, Openshaw, Simpson, Wheeler, Giltrow, Harper, Dave Hill, Chesters, Rovery, Dan Hill.
Bench: Booley, Taylor, To’oala, Harrison, Spencer M.
Scorers:T:Giltrow (1m), Harper (21m), To’oala x2 (53/63m) P:Barnesx2 (40/77m) C:Barnesx4.

Raiders: Maslen, Boyland, Richards, ForrestJ, Barnes, McLean, Walsh, Birch, Grief, Gatford, Dingle, Lake, Whittall, Dawe, Perkins.
Bench: Luke, Adams, Spurgeon, Harris, Sims.
Scorers:T:Dawe (25m), Barnes (79m) P:McLean (12m) C: McLean (25m)

12th January 2019 Raiders 29 Clifton 49
On a rather dull cold day, Raiders faced up to Clifton in a confident state of mind having managed their first victory ever the previous week at Redruth. An early try through an interception from lock George Hammond further enthused the decent crowd of 400+. The home side held onto the lead until not much more than 10 minutes were left in the half, when a flurry of tries from both sides (2-3) saw oranges taken 19-21. The visitors got on the board first in the 2nd period but with 25 minutes to go the match could have gone either way at 29-35. In the end the visitors took the spoils with 2 converted tries in the last 5 minutes. Sam Goatley ran into 4 tries for Clifton, with all 7 of their tries being converted. An entertaining encounter.

Raiders: McLean, Barnes, Richards, Sims, Barlow H, Forrest J, Peach, Gatford, Gibson, Adams, Hammond, Lake, Maguire, Dawe, Cuffe.
Bench: Birch, Sassone, Harris, Whittall, Maslen.
Scorers: T:Hammond (5 & 53m), Barlow (31m), McLean (34m) :P: McLean (47m) C: McLean x3

Clifton: Dunn, Campbell, Levesley, Goatley, Pomphrey, Francis, SpencerM, Simpson, Wheeler, SpencerJ, Harper, Hall, Hill, Terry, Gibbons.
Bench; Roberts, Williams, Davies, Ali, Barnes.
Scorers: Goatley (27,39,49 &78m), Pomphrey (37m), SpencerM (42m), Harper (75m) C; Francis x5, Barnes x2

Last season P30 / W12 / D1 6th 70 points…. ‘Top of the middle’ Raiders 9th 68 points
Clifton finished top of the congested mid-table pack, although 30 points behind 5th placed Taunton, but 4 points ahead of 11th placed Barnes. In all the circumstances a reasonably successful season, cruising along in mid (ish) table for most of the season. They achieved the ‘double’ over local rivals Old Reds as well as against ourselves, Barnes and Bury St Edmunds. A blot being the defeats home and away against relegated Guernsey.. they also lost on home turf to LIWG (11-22).
Brad Barnes was top points scorer on 131, Will Pomphrey topped the try scorer’s list with 15. Mitchell Spencer (scrum half) was involved with 29 of the fixtures with Henry Harper (lock) making 26 starts. 50 different players were involved in the 30 fixtures.

This season so far……P8 / W6 29points 5th (Raiders 12th 12points)
A good start although last week they were up against table topping Taunton Titans down 35 -15 with 5 minutes left they ran in a couple of tries to get a bp in the defeat (35-27). The other defeat was at Leicester Lions (39-20). The wins have been against Barnes (34-31), Dings (10-33). Bury St Edmunds (18-14), Sutton & Epsom (38-31), Old Reds (10-37) and Bournemouth (28-15).

The players
A list of the players used in the last match against Titans is provided along with details on a few more players who have been used in recent fixtures.

12 members of the side that played in Taunton have played against Raiders in previous fixtures. Luke Stratford is new to the club this season and has featured in all the matches so far. He played at Hartpury and Jersey before joining Clifton, usually at hooker although last week he played in the back-row. Experienced lock forwards Mike Uren and Joe Quinn have returned, as has Fin Sharp (wing) after a season at BSE.

Another tough challenge awaits Raiders on the road with their first of three visits to Bristol again this season. A visit to this historic club is always good and the team very much appreciate your encouragement from the touchline.

It is appreciated that there are other attractions on show this Saturday, but that should be over by 11.00, giving just enough time to get to Bristol for 2.30 kick-off !!!

………..C’Mon Raiders.

Name/age *played v Raiders Apps       2019/20 Total


Join Points Honours Position/Previous Clubs                 *Played v Raiders
Played v Titans  24th October 2019 LOST 35-27
Cameron McDonald (20) 7 7 2019 2T/2C


Eng C U20 Hampshire Full Back: Chinnor, Bury St Edmunds, Bracknell
Bentley Halpin*(23) 6 40 2017 1T   Wing: Christ’s Brecon, Cardiff University, Bahrain


Keiran Griffiths (21) 4/3R 7 2019   Centre: Bedford, Llanelli
Chris Levesley* (25) 6/1R 49 2017 1T GB 7s Students Centre: Jersey 15, Dragons, Ebbw Vale, Cardiff Met, Queensland Reds.
Finlay Sharp* (23) 6 29 2016-8


5T   Wing: Bury St Edmunds 23, Glos Jnr Academy,


Brad Barnes* (27) 6/1R 150 2012-4 2015 1T/14C /10P Somerset Fly Half: Avon, Bath Academy, Oldfield, Lydney*28
Mitchell Spencer* (26) 8 101 2014 1T Somerset Scrum Half: Dings* 12, Hartpury 15
Ricky Cano* (27) 8 30 2017   LH Prop: Hartpury*38, Chinnor*76, Wharfedale 21,

Hull Ionians 3, Rotherham Titans 3.

Jack Williams* 3/3R 91 2015 Somerset Hooker: Cinderford*5, Clevedon
Mark Roberts* 7/1R 31 2018   TH Prop: Reading, Oldfield OB
Mike Uren* 6/1R 48 2015 3T Glos Lock: Cardiff Met, Ding’s*60, Cinderford 10, Bristol

A & 7s

Henry Harper* (23) 6/2R 64 2016 3T Somerset Lock: Hartpury 2.
Luke Stratford (24) 6/2R 8 2019 4T   BS Wing Forward: Jersey 11, Hartpury 53
Dan Broady 5/1R 6 2019   OS Wing Forward: Glos, Hartpury, Cinderford*29
Niall Gibbons* (23) 6 16 2019 1T Glos U20 No8: Glos Academy, Hartpury, Stourbridge 40
Tom Wilson 3/4R 6 2019   Wing Forward: Moseley, Cardiff University
Sam Harrison* (27) 4/3R 169 2011 4T Somerset Centre: UWE
Harry Bate (26) 3/3R 6 2019 1T Eng Counties


Wing Forward: Blackheath 47, Old Albanian 41, Blaydon*39, Newbury
Tom Stanton (20) 1/1R 2 2019   Wing: Cheltenham College, Gloucester Utd
Matt West (18) 0/1R 1 2019   Prop: Clifton College
Played Recently         Last Played  
Reece Dunn (18) 2 2 2019 19th October Full Back: Glos Utd
James Dixon (34) 3 3 2019 1P /8C 19th October


Fly Half: Swansea, Moseley, Ospreys, Bedwas,
Joe Quinn* (29) 3 74 2013-6 2019 19th October Lock: Otley 44, Wharfedale 25, Nottingham 25,

Hartpury 48

Matt Hall * 5 40 2017 19th October OS Wing Forward: Rhimbina (Cardiff)
Charlie Bullimore*  (25) 0/3R 145 2012 19th October Prop: Clifton Youth
Archie Benson (18) 2/3R 5 2019 1T 12th October

Eng U18

Lock: Glos Utd, Dean Close School
George Barton (18) 0/1R 1 2019 12th October Fly Half: Glos U18 Academy