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Basingstoke RFC out to prove they belong in National Three London
BASINGSTOKE RFC’s tough start to the National League Three London continues with their longest trip of the season to Guernsey on Saturday.
The visitors are still looking for their first win of the campaign after a 25-10 reverse at Bury St Edmunds which kept the home side in touch with leaders Dorking.
Their Channel Island rivals only chalked up their first success of the season last weekend with a 40-24 victory at basement side Thurrock.
This extended their unbeaten run to two games after they drew with Old Elthamians in their previous home outing.
So it looks another tough match for newly-promoted ’Stoke, who will fly to Guernsey on Saturday morning and return the same day hoping to make it a happy away day.
Coach Will Croker said: “We know Guernsey will be a good side and a well-organised team.
“They have an excellent coach in Jordan Reynolds, who is sure to get the best out of his players.
“We have had a tough start to the season playing the top four teams, but we have to put that behind us.
“Other teams will face the same sequence of games during the season and will have to work out how to get points from the games.”
‘Stoke have been forced into making a few changes to their line-up from last week as full-back Ash Paterson will miss the trip due to a thigh injury, while number eight Matt Horne and second row Rob Durham are unavailable.
Jodi Kochandwski comes in to replace Paterson, while Ryan Davis will move up from the bench to take Horne’s place.
The team will make a decision on the day as to who else comes into the second row, either Rudi Kochandwski or coach Croker.
Croker said: “We have been working hard in training on reducing the personal errors that cost us in the end at Bury St Edmunds. We keep getting told we are good enough to play in this league, but we have to start getting results to prove it.”
After their trip to Guernsey, ’Stoke have two home games on consecutive weekends, starting with their rearranged game against Thurrock a week on Saturday.
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