Peter Gavin previews Worthing Raiders v Old Redcliffians


Worthing Raiders v Old Redcliffians RFC

6th April 2019 Kick-off 3pm                                                                            

Old Reds are our visitors this Saturday making their second visit to Roundstone Lane for a National League 2 South fixture. Raiders travelled to their Scotland Lane base in Brislington, Bristol last December returning defeated 33-22 in a tight encounter, played in difficult windy conditions.

History & Background stuff.

The club was founded in 1918 (a couple of years before ourselves) to cater for the former pupils of Redcliffe Boys School. The founders were former pupils returning from WW1. From the outset the club had an open door policy and was not exclusively for old boys. The home fixtures were played at the School ground, Daventry Road, in Knowle until 1968 when the fields were developed into school buildings. At that time the club moved to the present site in Scotland Lane. The original school was founded in 1571, although it merged with Temple Colston’s school in 1969, creating the co-educational St Mary Redcliffe & Temple School.

The rugby club was successful in the pre-professional days with probably their ‘purple patch’ on the playing front occurring during the early 1980s. They won the prestigious Bristol Combination Cup as well as the Somerset Senior Cup a couple of times during this period. The latter trophy gained the club entry into the National ‘John Player’ Cup competition. Once official leagues were introduced the club settled in Somerset Premier (L8), eventually gaining promotions (and the occasional relegation) within the Regional leagues. In 2016-17 they were Champions of the South West Region thereby gaining promotion to National 2 South.

The club won the National Intermediate Cup in 2009-10, the final being held at Twickenham.

ORs turn out 3 senior sides on Saturdays with Junior and Mini rugby taking over on Sundays.

Old Redcliffians is a proper community club, like ourselves, and rightly takes great pride in the success of their junior section, with many participants graduating through to the senior teams.

British Lion prop forward the great Gareth Chilcott (Bath) and up and coming young prop Ellis Genge (now with Leicester Lions) both emerged via their junior section.

Club Colours: Red and Black hooped jerseys, red shorts & stockings.

Links with Worthing

Cup match

‘Old Reds’ first visited Roundstone Lane on 3rd December 1983 for a 2nd round John Player National Cup encounter. This cup competition was the major trophy event for County cup winners in the ‘Amateur days’. It was a stepping stone to possibly drawing a match against a ‘Giant’ of the game and for a bumper home gate or a share of the gate at a major venue. The ‘top’ sides joined the draw at the 3rd round stage. A ‘Recce’ party visited Bristol a week before the match, but generally not a lot was known about Old Reds amongst the Worthing contingent. The general view was that they were a good side with a very strong set of forwards. Would home advantage give the Sussex team the edge? Recollections of the day are a little scant, but a certain ex Bristol captain and legend Mike Fry had fine afternoon at tight head and the home side received a scrummaging lesson. Spring heeled lock forward Derek Barry (Bath, 118 apps) dominated possession from the line-out. ‘Without the ball and all that’….. saw ORs run out victorious (6-25…HT 0-15). (NB Try 4 points)

Worthing: Coulson C, Forrest J, O’Connor M, Stappers L(capt), Baker S, Coackley P, Clarke T, Baker P, Grantham-Hill N, Hornby R, Vincent B, Herbert P, Stoner S, Bateman L, Lamprey C.

Reps: Matthews D, Purdy S.   Scorers: T:Stappers (70m):C: Coakley.

Old Reds: Gaddes M, Jones G, Lancastle S, Woodward T, Palmer A, King G, Haigh P, Short N, Cotton M, Fry M (capt), Barry D, De’Scossa N, Wheatley J, Excell S, Taylor P. Reps: (from) Yandell R, Bond P, Luker G, Greenway P.

Scorers: T: Lancastle(39m), Palmer(60m), Excell(72m)C: Gaddes(39&60)P: Gaddes(1m&40m).

National League encounters and league position

2017-18 W 40 – OR 34    OR 37 – W 31     Worthing 7th Old Reds 12th

2018 -19 OR 33 – W 22

8th December 2018 Old Redcliffians 33 Worthing Raiders 22

The match was played in very difficult weather conditions caused by hurricane ‘Deirdre’, with gusty winds, gale force at points, and squally showers. The visitors had the use of the slope in the first half, with pundits correctly thinking that 15-17 at oranges was not enough leeway. Despite the conditions both teams played good rugby with the home side making the best of the conditions for a deserved bonus point victory.

Old Reds: Owen, Bird, Gervais, Jones, Boxall, Hill, Sprague, McGrath, Ward, Caulfield, FryD, Pursall, Parsons, Coster, Doyle.

Bench: Harvey, Gompels, Zindi, Wiltshire, Hall.

Scorers:T: Bird (5), Hill (34), Parsons (51), Jones (79) C:Hill x2 (34 &79) P:Hill x3 (32, 60,78) .

Raiders: McLean, Maslen, Sims, Richards, Barnes, ForrestJ, Walsh, Birch, Luke, Adams, Dingle, Lee, Lake, Whittall, Cuffe. Bench: Gibson, Sassone, Dawe, Holt, Barlow.

Scorers:T: Cuffe x2 (15, 39), Barnes (80) C: McLean x2 (15 & 39) P: McLean (6)

Last season….P30 /W10 /D2 ….58 points (12th)        

Old Reds spent much of the season in relegation territory but came through in the end sealing matters in the last fixture against Redruth (34-12). They eventually finished 1 point ahead of LIWG and three points above Barnstaple who were relegated. Whilst the Redruth result may have been vital, the wins against Bury St Edmund (19-14), Clifton (34-0), Tonbridge Juddians (14-10) and Raiders were important along the way. They also acquired 18 bonus points.  Ashley Groves led the way on points (97) with flying winger Henry Bird landing 13 tries, Ethan Doyle matching him from No 8. Danny Hodge featured in every fixture, fellow lock Corey Talbot missing just one. In all seventeen players featured in 20 matches or more, with a total 40 different players used to fulfil the fixtures

This season so far……P27 /W 9…11th (53 points)   (Raiders 12th 53 points)

The headline above tells the story for both the season so far and the importance of this fixture to both clubs. Old Reds have won 2 matches on the road, at LIWG (15-35) early in the season and at Redruth (17-27) in December. Otherwise their wins have been at Scotland Lane with last Saturday’s result against Taunton Titans standing out (22-17). After the Raiders fixture they entertain Redruth, with a visit to Clifton for a local derby to conclude the season. (Clifton presently on 66 points are already safe from relegation, Redruth on 63 points are virtually safe.)

The players

As usual a list of players used in the previous fixture against Taunton is provided along with a little more detail as to their credentials. Most of the players listed have played against Raiders before. Henry Bird (wing) who missed the Titans’ fixture is league top try scorer with 24.  Keiran Hill, who also missed the Titans’ match, is top points scorer with 178. Back-row forward  Dan Fry has featured in every match.

With both teams locked on 53 points and hovering above the relegation zone this fixture has special significance. It really goes without saying that your vocal support on the touchline will be much appreciated by the boys to add the 16th man to get them over the line!!!



………………………………. C’Mon Raiders!!!

Name/ *Played v Raiders 8th Dec Apps 2018-9 Total N2App Joined Points Honours Position / Previous Club/s & Appearances *played v Raiders
Team v Taunton Titans     30th March 2019                                            WON 22-17
Craig Owen* 33 19/1R 40 2014 2T   Full Back:
James Clements 25 14/1R 28 2011 5T   Wing: Old Reds Youth, Bristol Comb U20
Christian Gervais* 28 22 46 2015 2T Glos Centre: Ding’s*56, Taunton*71.
Aaron Rice 27 2/7R 11 2016 2T   Centre: Clevedon
Ezra Caven 20 5/1R 20 2016 4T Bristol 7s & U18 Wing: OR Youth, SGS Filton
Ashley Groves 26 9/8R 38 2012 1T/3P/12C Somerset Fly Half: Bristol Harlequins, Bristol Comb U20
Kiyan Wiltshire* 19 17/5R 48 2017 1T   Scrum Half: Bristol Saracens
Craig McGrath* 35 11/5R 35 2013   LH Prop: Clifton 4, Bristol 15, Bridgwater* 26, Newbury 26, London Scots 18, Barking 5, Rosslyn Park 16.
Keiran Ward* 23 24/2R 55 2017 2T Somerset Hooker: Hornets, Old Patesians, Keynsham
Ellis Joseph 22 7/9R 45 2015   TH Prop: OR Youth,
Chris Pursall* 26 23/2R 30 2014 7T Glos     SW U20 Lock: Bristol United
Corey Talbot 23 24 52 2016 1T   Lock: Keynsham
Scott Parsons* 21 14/1R 43 2015 2T Bristol U18 BS Wing Forward: OR Youth, Bristol United
Dan Fry* 30 25/2R 52 2011 4T Somerset OS Wing Forward: Cinderford 10, Weston-s-Mare 28
Ethan Doyle* 29 19/1R 46 2014 3T   No8: Ebbw Vale, Newbridge, Newport Sar
Jermaine Jones* 26 25/1R 51 2017 6T   Centre: Hornets RFC
Dominic Sprague* 19 9/11R 20 2018 1T   Scrum Half: OR Youth
Alex Harvey* 22 20/5R 47 2015 Bristol U18 LH Prop: OR Youth, Bristol United
Jake Caulfield* 26 16/7R 41 2017 Ire U20 TH Prop: Clifton 22, Ulster 1, Esher*4, Cinderford 15, Coventry, Taunton*44,
Pat Zindi* 22 8/8R 16 2018   Wing Forward: Oldfield RFC
Played Recently Last play
Henry Bird* 29 24 47 2014 24T 23rd Mar Full Back: Cinderford 3, Bristol 7s.
Kieran Hill* 22 21/3R 37 2018 3T/44C/24P/  1DG 23rd Mar Somerset Fly Half: Taunton Titans 3, Clevedon


George Kloska 19 2/16R 18 2018 23rd Mar Hooker: Bristol Academy
Scott Coster* 27 13 22 2011 2T 23rd Mar Somerset OS Wing Forward: