First trip to Peterborough for 1st XV

Date: 05 March 2019

Peterborough Lions vs. Preston Grasshoppers

Preston Grasshoppers take to the road once again this coming Saturday and travel to a new venue for both them and their travelling 1869 Club supporters. The journey to Peterborough Lions will be the farthest they’ve travelled since the journey to Bedfordshire to play Ampthill on the 17thof January 2015.

Hoppers will travel with a certain amount of confidence in extending their unbeaten run to five wins and bagging another double victory for the season over the bottom side in the league. However, as was discovered at Lightfoot Green earlier in the season, their opponents won’t be any pushovers, for whilst they’ve still to record a win on their travels, they’ve taken the scalps of promotion contenders Chester together with Sheffield Tigers, Macclesfield and South Leicester at their Soltice Park home.

Last Saturday’s victory over Tynedale turned out to be something of an ‘Arm-Wrestle’between two evenly matched defences. Hoppers held much of the teritorial advantage and this proved to be the deciding factor along with their supperior pack in the tight.There were a few notables coming out of the game which saw Ryan Purcell make his first start for the club after a number of appearances off the bench and James Fitzpatrick’s try taking him to ten and fifty points for the season. There was also a very rare occurance during the game when Tom Davidson successfully dropped a goal for threee points. The last time this feat was accomplished by a Hoppers first teamer was by Lloyd Davies against Birmingham Solihull at Lightfoot Green almost five years back, which aquates to one hundred and forty two games ago!

Peterborough Lions were promoted into this League at the end of last season after winning the play-off game against Hull, a club that had been Hoppers main rivals for automatic promotion. Hull had gone into the game strong favourites but not even home advantage could secure victory and the promotion that beckoned. ‘The Lions’ won the game by a comfortable margin and with it prized elevation to the National Leagues.

According to the Peterborough Lions website, the club was formed in 1944 by workers at the Baker Perkins factory who organised a team to play against the Free French Air Force based at the Westwood aerodrome. In 2005 Baker Perkins RUFC changed their name to represent their home City and after promotion as Champions of Midlands 1 East in 2014 our visitors challenged for promotion each season in the Midlands Premier/Midlands 3 League before eventually gaining their due success at Hull back at the end of April.

As mentioned earlier, the 1869 Club are running a coach to this long distance fixture, so if you’d like to travel please add your name to the list in the clubhouse foyer or ring the club on 01772 853546.

Team News

Hoppers side to face Peterborough sees Head Coach Paul Arnold rotate his squad with Oli Trippier replacing PJ Millea at hooker and Luke Procter taking the place of Teddy Leatherbarrow. Sam Stott and Scott Jordan come into the back line in place of Alex Hurst and Nathan Pope. The bench sees Lancashire U20s scrum-half Matt Danson-Hayes in line for a debut if he takes the field. Dan Madden is named amongst the replacements after a long injury lay off.

2. Oliver TRIPPIER
3. Peter ALTHAM
4. Adam HOWARD
6. Ally MURRAY
9. James GOUGH
10. Thomas DAVIDSON
11. Matt CROW
13. Sam STOTT
14. Tyler SPENCE
15. Scott JORDAN


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