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Basingstoke teenager Chris May-Miller gets chance to play at Twickenham
BASINGSTOKE RFC rugby player Chris May-Miller fulfilled a long-held ambition when he played at Twickenham Stadium, the home of English rugby.
In his first term at Cambridge University, the 20-year-old was part of the winning team in the under-21 varsity match against Oxford University.
The game is the annual curtain raiser to the Blues Varsity match.
May-Miller started his career in Basingstoke at the age of five and made his Basingstoke first team debut a week after turning 18 in December 2011.
The former Cranbourne Business and Enterprise College and Queen Mary’s College student then spent a year as a volunteer, teaching English in Honduras and Nicaragua, countries not known for their rugby.
A vital part of getting his rugby head back on was the welcome he received from Basingstoke RFC on his return and he trained with them before going to Jesus College, Cambridge to begin his degree in Natural Sciences.
He was therefore particularly pleased to be selected for the university’s under-21 squad, despite his year’s break.
The under-21s played a variety of teams in the two months building up to the big match, with May-Miller finding a very regular place in the team.
In the Varsity Match he started on the bench, playing number 22, and came on early in the second half, playing on the wing.
Despite breaking a finger with 15 minutes left, May-Miller saw out the rest of the match.
Although he did not see much of the ball he was called on to make several important tackles.
He also played a covering role when the Cambridge outside centre was sin-binned with eight minutes of the match remaining.
Cambridge won the game 30-19 and after the game May-Miller climbed the steps to the royal box to receive his commemorative tankard.
Talking about the whole experience May-Miller said: “It was a surreal experience. It was amazing walking out of the tunnel and looking around Twickenham.
“I was able to soak up the atmosphere sitting on the bench and hearing the cheers as I came on especially from family and friends.
“By the end of our game the whole of the first tier was full.
“I can now say I won a game at Twickenham. Next year I will hope to return and score a try.”
May-Miller is hoping he can return and play for Basingstoke during the university holidays.
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