Peter Gavin previews Worthing Raiders v Canterbury



Worthing Raiders v Canterbury RFC 

26th January 2019

Kick-off 2pm

Canterbury RFC visit Roundstone Lane this Saturday to renew rivalries in what always seems like a derby match, despite the fact that it is at least a 200-mile round trip for the players and supporters. It is, of course, their 9th visit to us for a National League 2(S) fixture and when added to the other fixtures played over the years, in the London & SE leagues, as well as ‘friendly’ matches it is probably our longest standing fixture.

Background stuff

Canterbury RFC (aka ‘The City Club’) was founded in 1929. In those days a high percentage of the playing membership were involved in the Agricultural Industry, so the season didn’t really get moving until after harvesting. In 1937 the club moved to the present ground in Merton Lane, which is now known as MTG (Marine Travel ground). The Mayor of Canterbury opened the playing facility, although changing and post-match discussions were still held at a local pub, ‘The Fleur de Lys’.

In the early 1990s the club was wallowing away in Kent 2, but by season 2006/7 promotion to the National League 2 South was achieved. The onset of a strong mini/junior section being at the heart of this transition. Canterbury finished a very creditable 4th in their first season in the National League. Season 2010/11 saw relegation by a whisker, on the last day of the season, but a bounce straight back the following year was achieved following a virtually unbeaten season.

Canterbury RFC, like ourselves, is a true Community club running 4, sometimes 5, sides on a Saturday. The club are also involved in a potential ground move.

Junior and Mini Rugby for age group 7-U18 takes over on Sundays.

The Ladies XV play in the National Challenge South East 1 South, the same league as our Ladies.

Wheel-Chair Rugby has been added to the club’s activities, now in their 4th season.

The official club colours are black and gold.

Worthing v Canterbury…..National League encounters

As already mentioned, the clubs have had many league and friendly fixtures over the years, but a resume of the National League fixtures between the clubs and relative league positions at the end of the season is provided below:

2008/9    C 35 – W 17 W 11 – C 20 Worthing 12th  Canterbury 5th
2009/10  C 16 – W 18 W 20 – C 20 W 6th    C 7th
2010/11  C 20 – W 38 W 57 – C 22 W 8th    C 14th.    Canterbury Relegated
2012/13  C 17 – W 38 W 55 – C 31 W 2nd   C 8th       Worthing Promoted
2014/15  C 12 – W 20 W 36 – C 25 W 5th    C 11th
2015/16  C 20 – W 27 W 41 – C 24 W 11th  C 10th
2016/17  C 13 – W 7 W 30 – C 12 W 12th  C 8th
2017/18  C 50 – W 26 W 22 – C 17 W 7th   C 10th
2018/19  C 21 – W 10    

 6th October 2018…….Canterbury 21 Worthing Raiders 10

Raiders travelled to a rather wet Canterbury with a few changes to the side. They had the benefit of the slope in the first half, but the wet conditions ruled with handling becoming more difficult as the weather worsened. Raiders took the lead after 15 minutes with a Matt McLean penalty, but Canterbury picked up a couple of converted tries to lead 14-3 at the break. Liam Perkins scored in the 56th minute with Matt McLean’s conversion to take the score to 14-10, but almost immediately the home side broke through for another converted try to restore the differential. Raiders continued to press for a score to at least provide a bonus point, but the Canterbury defence held out.

 Canterbury: Moss, Mackintosh, Goatley, Sterling, Murray, Young, Smart, Cooper, King, Kenny, Cadman, Corker, Whetton, Stapleton, Stephens.

Bench: Braithwaite, Otto, Green, Grimes, Oliver.

Raiders: Forrest H, Boyland, Forrest J, Sims, Barnes, McLean, Walsh, Birch, Luke, Adams, Lake, Lee, Harris, Dawe, Perkins.

Bench: Grief, Sassone, Gatford, Maslen, Hammond.

Canterbury Last Season………10th….W13/ D1/ L16…..72 points

Another middling season. Never any real danger of the team being dragged into relegation territory. Their home form remained solid with 9 wins. The spoils with nearby rivals Tonbridge Juddians were shared although the away team won each leg (24-36 at The Slade, 19-22 at MTG). Leading points scorer was Ollie Best with 105 points. Leading try scorer was Harry Sayers with 15, closely followed by Aiden Moss on 14. Lock forward Matt Corker was in involved with all 30 matches, scrum half Dan Smart featured in 29.

This season so far……P19 /W14 2nd 72 points   (Raiders 9th 44 points

High flying Canterbury are having a great season, whilst trailing leaders Rams by 16 points they occupy the play-off  spot, although Taunton (71), Henley (70) and TJs (66) are challenging as we enter the business end of the season. The race for second looks like being a tight run affair that could go to the wire. (Canterbury host Rams in the last match of the season.) Their defeats have been against Rams in the first match of the season (44-15), Titans (23-22), Redruth (14-19), TJs (23-18) with a bit of a surprise at Dings (23-20). Their home form has been rock solid, although they survived a tight encounter last week against Titans (26-24) the reliable boot of Gary Kingdom deserted him in the last couple of minutes, with a potential match winning penalty drifting wide. Ollie Best has scored 130 points, with Aidan Moss leading the try scorers with 11

The Players

As usual a list of the players used in the last fixture against Titans is provided along with detail on a few other players who have been used recently. The appearances column is perhaps a clue to the success of the side with many of the players with 15+ against their name. The boiler house combination of Royce Cadman and Matt Corker starting every match, with the front row of Messrs. Cooper, King and Kenny only missing a handful between them. The three-quarter line up selection has also been the model of consistency. The back three having notched up 26 tries between them.

This fixture is normally a must see event, but this time around there seems to be just a little bit of extra spice to it. Both sides look to score tries so this should make for a grand spectacle. Please try to get along to provide that much valued touchline support for the boys!!!


…….C’Mon Raiders

Name/Age     *Played v Raiders 6th Oct Apps 2018/9                    N2 Apps Join Points Honours Position  Prev. Club/s apps                                                             * Played v Raiders
Team v Titans           19th January   WON 26-24
Aiden Moss* (26) 17/1R 147 2012 11T Eng Counties U20 Kent Full Back: Blackheath 4.
Ricky Mackintosh* (25) 17/1R 78 2012 7T Kent Wing: Dover
Sam Sterling* (24) 18/1R 26 2018 5T Munster U20 Centre: Kilkenny College, UL Bohemians, Bury St Edmunds* 32, Ampthill 7
Tom Best (28) 12/2R 194 2008 3T /1C Kent Centre: Deal & Betteshanger
Jon ‘JJ’ Murray* 13/6R 67 2016 8T Kent Wing: Ashford, Tonbridge Juddians
Ollie Best 14/3R 96 2014 8T/35C /10P   Fly Half: Medway
Dan Smart* 14/5R 118 2014 11T Kent Scrum Half: Glasgow Hawks
Aaron Cooper* (28) 16/2R 67 2016 1T Kent LH Prop: Dover
Tristan King* (24) 18 18 2018 3T Ulster U20 Hooker: Malone, Bury St Edmunds*19
Sam Kenny* (23) 18 107 2014 3T Kent U20 TH Prop: Thanet Wanderers
Royce Cadman* (31) 19 153 2013 2T Eng Counties Glos & Kent Lock: Thanet Wanderers, Hull Ionians 14,  Doncaster K 8,  Newport, Bedwas, Hartpury
Matt Corker* (36) Coach 19 49 2017 Eng Students


Lock: Thanet Wanderers, Wasps 5, Blackheath 16, Havant*11, London Welsh(c) 228, Richmond 22.
Sam Rogers (27) 1/2R 191 2010 1T Kent BS Wing Forward: Canterbury Youth
Sean Stapleton* (30) 12/1R 13 2018 2T Connaught Academy OS Wing Forward: Buccaneers, Roscrea, Palmyra (Aust), Bury St Edmunds*76
Jamie Stephens* (19) 16/2R 30 2017 3T   No 8: Canterbury Youth
Jarvis Otto* (22) 3/13R 16 2017 Kent Hooker: Dover (c)
Kyle Braithwaite* 5/7R 30 2016 1T   Scrum Half:
Jim Green* 3/13R 144 2010 1T Kent LH Prop: Westcombe Park 11.
Tyler Oliver* 2/2R 4 2018   No 8: Bedlinog RFC, Cardiff Blues
Harvey Young* (23) 7/2R 9 2018 2T/ 16C/1P Scotland U18 Fly Half: Westcombe Park Academy, Dundee HSFP, Armagh, Cottesloe Perth (Aust)
Played Recently         Last Played  
Charlie Grimes* 11/7R 18 2018 3T N Mids U20 12th Jan Wing: Luctonians, Marist Albion NZ
Alex Wake-Smith 1/3R 91 2013 12th Jan TH Prop: Canterbury University
Freddie Edwards 3/6R 15 2016 2T 22nd Dec BS Wing Forward:
Louis Whetton* (23) 10/4R 31 2017 N Harbour U20 NZ 22nd Dec BS Wing Forward: Northcote Birkenhead NZ, Bury St Edmunds*18