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National League 1: Week 12: Previews

NL1: Week 12 - Previews

By Tom Little
November 18 2016

  Week 12 sees the top two facing opponents from the bottom 4, with the other two bottom sides also facing difficult fixtures.  

Leaders Hartpury College will be firm favourites for another record breaking B/P win over a struggling Darlington Mowden Park side, who are their visitors. Park are now down in 13th place just two points above the relegation zone after a run of losing games. It should be another easy victory for Hartpury thus piling more pressure on Park.

Second placed Birmingham Moseley, after their narrow defeat at Albion face another away trip, but this time to bottom placed Macclesfield. It should be another foregone conclusion for the Midlanders , who have had only two narrow defeats so far. Macclesfield after a reasonable start to their league career have suddenly found them at the receiving end of some large defeats, although still retaining the ability to score tries. A game that Moseley should win to keep pressure on the leaders.

It should be a high scoring encounter as third placed  Blackheath have an in form Loughborough Students as their visitors. Both sides have the ability to move the ball and score plenty of tries, both through their forwards and backs. However Blackheath appear to have a slight edge in their forwards and with home advantage should be slight favourites.

On the face of it 15th placed Blaydon against 4th placed Plymouth Albion should be an easy victory for the away team. However the last two weeks have seen Blaydon almost beat Coventry away and last week they had a comprehensive victory at home over Hull Ionians. At home Blaydon will be confident that they can cause an upset and the home pack could quite easily have the edge. Albion should be at full strength for this game so will be confident that they can sneak a win, which will allow them to keep pressure on Moseley in 2nd place.

Hull Ionians who suffered a catastrophic defeat at Blaydon last week ,face an equally tough side in Ampthill & District who travel to the north. Ampthill after a good win over Coventry will be looking to consolidate 5th spot and although Hull Ionians are at home the visitors are expected to come away with any easy win.  

It could be a close contest at Coventry Rugby who have Cambridge visiting them. Cambridge will be pleased with last week’s win over Fylde, whilst Coventry will be disappointed with their late capitulation to Ampthill. Cambridge are another side capable of scoring plenty of tries but Coventry’s home form has largely been impressive ,so at home they should be slight favourites.

Esher and Old Albanian both meet after both suffered heavy defeats last weekend. Esher probably put up their poorest performance of the season in losing at Rosslyn Park. However back at home they will be confident at a home win, although Old Albanian cannot be written off as they still retain a chance to spring a surprise.

The final game sees Fylde back at home as they meet Rosslyn Park. Both sides are separated by just one place but are equal on match points. All signs point to a close game but Park have been showing some form which was expected from them at the start of the campaign especially in their forwards, and so will be confident they can get a result away from home. Fylde for their part have been very  inconsistent and may struggle to match the influence of the Rosslyn Park pack.

Fixtures:  Week 12: Saturday 19th November:




Loughborough Students




Plymouth Albion


Coventry Rugby






Old Albanian




Rosslyn Park


Hartpury College


Darlington Mowden Park


Hull Ionians






Birmingham Moseley




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National League 1: Week 12: Previews
Unofficial Coventry Rugby (IP Logged)
18/11/2016 13:02
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