Stroud Combination Vets 10

Gloucestershire Schoolteacher’s 45

A RUGBY team representing the Gloucestershire Schoolmasters, who last played in the 1980’s, were successfully revived this week, when they beat the Stroud and District Combination Vets at Cirencester RFC.

The driving force behind the Schoolmaster’s team was Thomas Keble’s Andy Blaylock who manfully gathered together players who were coached on the night by retired School’s legend Clive Stuart-Smith who had played for the side on their last appearance 30 years previously.

To commemorate the match and hopefully make it an annual fixture the Eric Blackman Shield was generously donated by the GRFSU and was presented before kick-off by RFU Past President JV Smith to the ERFSU President Eric Blackman.

Eric Blackman has been a driving force in Gloucestershire School’s rugby for many years and it was fitting that his efforts were commemorated in this manner and with this match.

The match itself was well contested, especially up-front in tight and mauling play, but the age differences and fitness levels made a major difference especially when the ball went out wide or was spilled from the maul and ruck.

Referee Tommy MacDonald-Milner allowed some good advantages and a total of nine tries were scored in the School’s 45-10 victory.

Notable performances for the host team came from Fairford RFC’s Richie Lewis and Ants Little, ironically both from Coln House School, Cirencester RFC’s Chris Thorn and Dave Reeves, Minchinhampton’s Fraser Smith and Taff Evans and Stroud RFC’s Lee Marshall and Rob Davey who captained the side.

It was fitting that the final try was scored by James Woollin the current School’s Hon Sec who trundled over unopposed in the fading light.

COMBINATION VETS SQUAD : Tim Thompson, Simon Collyer-Bristow, Dave Shrimpton, John Newman, Chris Thorn, Steve Thompstone, Dave Reeves, Rob Wagstaff (Cirencester RFC); Wayne Lavis, Phil Moorsom, Mike Bryant (Dursley RFC), Taff Evans, Julian Attawes, Gino Beaumont, Fraser Smith (Minchinhampton RFC), Lee Marshall, Rob Davey (Capt) (Stroud RFC) Ants Little, Richie Lewis (Fairford RFC).

The next Combination Vets match will be on Saturday May 17 at Cirencester RFC in the Chris Cox Memorial match v the RLC Army Vets.