Having underperformed against relegation-threatened Plymouth
Albion in their most recent outing, Jersey are looking to bounce
back and claim a scalp against play-off probables London
The Exiles travel to the Channel Islands with a 14-point cushion
over fifth-placed Rotherham, but keen to seal their top-four berth
and continue their dominance in fixtures against Jersey.
The Islanders have won just one of the five encounters between
the sides - the 20-17 home win back in
October 2012, when tries by Guy Thompson and James Copsey secured
their club's first-ever Championship win at the seventh time of
asking. (click on scores for links to match reports)
Since then Scottish have racked up three bonus-point wins at the
Athletic Ground in Richmond [41-33 in 2012/13, 29-3 last season and 38-17 in November last
year], and a tight encounter at St Peter last Easter, when Jersey
were denied a bonus point at the death, going down 17-25, in spite of tries
by Drew Locke (pictured below) and Nicky Griffiths.
Shuffling his resources after the 18-17 defeat against
Albion a fortnight ago, Head Coach Harvey Biljon has brought
three players back into the Jersey starting line-up. Recent signing
Fautua Otto returns on the wing, while Mark McCrea is selected at
inside centre and Lewis Robling starts at fly-half in place of
In the pack, Sam Lockwood returns at loosehead in place of
Ignacio Lancuba, while Nick Haining starts at number 8 after
missing his side's last three games through injury.
Bentley and Lancuba are on the Jersey replacements' bench, which
also includes Dave Markham, the lone survivor from the 2012 win
over the Exiles. [It is anticipated the visitors will have two
members of their squad from that day on duty: skipper Mark Bright
and winger Miles Mantella]
A wet start to 2015 meant that Jersey's three home games since
the New Year have been played in muddy conditions at St Peter, but
Saturday is expected to be spring-like and much firmer underfoot.
This may test two of the Championship's tightest defences - each
side has conceded 36 tries, fewer than anyone bar Worcester
The Exiles have out-scored Jersey 58-39 on tries so far, with
Bright claiming 19 of them, primarily via his side's effective
rolling maul, while flying wingers Mantella and Matt Williams have
seven apiece. The visitors also have the league's third-highest
points scorer: Peter Lydon has 153 points to his credit, and is
expected to switch from full-back to fly-half to cover for Dan
Newton after the Welshman was banned for using foul language
towards referee Matt Carley in the recent match against
A video link outlining Jersey's squad can be accessed at http://youtu.be/uVAfRI48NsE
Jersey squad v London Scottish 'H' - Greene King IPA
Championship, Saturday March 6th, St Peter - k-o 3pm
Alex Rae (capt)
London Scottish - a potted history
Formed: London Scottish came into existence in a pub,
namely Mackay's Tavern in the City of London on April 10th
Back in the day: The first season featured 15 matches,
and three of the opposing clubs are still in existence - Wasps,
Twickenham and Guy's Hospital.
Famous sons: the club has fielded 220 Scottish
internationals and the same number of Lions captains as Leicester
(four - Bill MacLagan in the 1880s, David Bedell-Sivright in
1903/4, Mike Campbell-Lamerton in 1966 and Gavin Hastings in 1993).
Other Scottish internationals worthy of mention include a
proliferation of back-row men - Mike Biggar, Rob Wainwright, Derek
White and Ian Smith - as well as Paul Burnell, Alastair McHarg,
Allan Lawson and Kenny Logan.
Jersey connections: actually not that many, but former
Jersey Chairman Cliff Chipperfield played for the Exiles while a
student in London in the 1970s, and last summer flanker Fred
Silcock signed for Scottish after two seasons with Jersey. Sadly
Fred couldn't shake off a serious knee injury and announced his
retirement from the game in November.
League history: The club began the league era at level
two, and by 1998 were a fully-professional unit playing in the
Premiership. However this was also the season that the professional
club went into administration, necessitating a year out while the
original club was reformed and placed into Herts/ Middlesex
Division One (level nine) in 2000. Four successive promotions
kick-started the revival, and by going up three more levels the
Exiles regained their original status from when the leagues began
28 years ago.
The Greene King IPA Championship this
Round 17 is split neatly into three couples. On opening (Friday)
night Bristol entertain Nottingham at Ashton Gate, while there's a
potentially pivotal encounter in the struggle to avoid relegation,
with Moseley hosting Doncaster.
Saturday sees games at Sixways, where top (Worcester) host
bottom (Plymouth), and at St Peter, while on Sunday Bedford travel
to Yorkshire Carnegie and Pirates host Rotherham, the latter
encounter to be shown live on Sky.
For the full preview to round 17, see HERE
Plenty of other rugby to tell you about this weekend. The
Championship match against London Scottish is one of three between
the clubs: the 'second' teams, namely the Athletic and the
Highlanders, will do battle in a Zoo Shield match in London at
12noon, while back on the Island it's a rare, and early, start for
Jersey's Vets sides, the Wanderers, as they take on the Exiles
Extra Bs at St Peter.
On Sunday Jersey Ladies have a home match against Tonbridge at
2.30pm, while the Colts travel to Trojans.
Returning to the Athletic, an extra match has been added to the
fixture list at short notice, with the British Army making a
whistle-stop trip to the Island next Tuesday (March 10th). The Army
side are looking for match practice ahead of the annual
Inter-Services Championship that takes place in April and May, and
more specifically The Babcock Trophy against the Navy that forms
part of that competition.
All members and supporters are encouraged to come up to the
game, which will be played on the main pitch at St Peter, kicking
off at 7pm. Food will be available in the clubhouse from 6pm for £8
- a chilli and rice combination with garlic bread from 6pm, with a
cheeseboard to follow.
Pre-booking through email@example.com would be a
bonus to give an idea of numbers, but otherwise there will still be
food for late-comers.
Enjoy your weekend's rugby!
Why not get yourself a Hot Pot (Curry or Chilli served with rice) in the supporters marquee £8 per pot.