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North Walsham Vikings look to do the double over rivals, Fullerians

07:00 16 February 2017

North Walsham on their way to an impressive win at Ruislip in their previous match.  Picture: HYWEL JONES

North Walsham on their way to an impressive win at Ruislip in their previous match. Picture: HYWEL JONES

Archant

Watford-based Fullerians, one of Hertfordshire’s oldest rugby clubs, will be making their first ever visit to Scottow on Saturday to take on North Walsham.

Formed in 1925 as Watford Grammer School Old Boys RFC, their name was changed to Old Fullerians in honour of the school’s founder Dame Elizabeth Fuller with the “Old” being dropped in 1965 when the club went open.

Although this is only the second meeting between the clubs, the first being the away game in October, there is a tenuous link in that former England international Josh Lewsey, who began his rugby career as a Mini at Scottow, later went through the Colts at Fullerians.

The visitors who came into London One having topped London Two North West last season currently sit in 11th place, 10 points clear of Chelmsford but look to be clear of any threat of relegation.

In the October meeting the Vikings had a bonus point win despite failing to fire on all cylinders and losing the influential Will Hodgson with a red card. Hodgson who has been switching from centre to No8 and back will be away this week but hopefully his spot in the back row will be filled by Mike Rouse, if work commitments do not interfere.

If Rouse is unavailable then either Lock Tom Coller or flanker Tom Knight could step up.

If there are no injuries then coach James Brooks could well leave the backs unchanged or simply rotate a couple of players from last week’s bench to starting roles.

The Raiders who halted a losing sequence with their last kick win over Broadland/Gt Yarmouth on Saturday are at home against Norwich Union this week. In the away fixture they enjoyed a win but were unable to field a consistent side since and have floundered somewhat although the evidence last week was that regardless of the personnel the team spirit is first rate.

Meanwhile Holt continue their battle against relegation from London Two North East when they travel to Upminster on the outskirts of London to take on Old Cooperians.

Holt are 11 points adrift of the side immediately above them, Ipswich, ahead of Saturday’s trip to a side who currently lie fifth.

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