Preview - Royal Navy Under 23s Vs Army Under 23s

Preview - Royal Navy Under 23s Vs Army Under 23s

This evening the Royal Navy Under 23s will begin their defence of the Inter Service Championship they won in 2019. The forecast for the match will be typical Devon November drizzle but that is unlikely to extinguish the hopes and expectations of a squad who have grown immensely since their formation in September.

The match is the first encounter of Army versus Navy rugby for over two years (excluding meetings between their Sevens counterparts) and a raucous crowd is expected at Brickfields Sports Ground in Plymouth. 

The young Sailors and Marines have had a testing number of warm up matches in the last couple of months. The team has experienced highs and lows against some very experienced opposition. Wins against student teams including British University Super League side Cardiff Met Uni have been counterbalanced with a difficult trip to Sandy Park against a very good Exeter Chiefs Academy. But Head Coach And Vance has seen positives in all of the wins, losses and draws and along with Assistant Director of Rugby, Owen Salmon, they have selected a side that they believe can retake the Inter Service Championship.

Assistant Director of Rugby Owen Salmon said, “Firstly I’d like to take the opportunity to thank all the ships and units that have released their players, their continued support is greatly appreciated. I believe we have prepared well this season and put in some strong performances along the way, the team has really gelled together and we are all very excited about Wednesday night’s game at Plymouth Albion and are looking to do the Royal Navy proud.”

The side that was announced on the 9th of November has, however, changed due to an injury picked up in training to Number 8 LH Ed Holland. That has provided an opportunity for AET Sam Jenkins to step into the starting side from the bench and for AB Rhys Owen to take his place amongst the finishers.

The Army have also been enjoying a return to Under 23s rugby. Their warm up has focused on more of the Army’s Corp sides along with some student opposition. Their final match was against Hampshire Under 20s, who were themselves the Royal Navy’s first opponents of the season. The Army won that match whereas the Royal Navy succumbed to a last minute defeat, however it is a much changed and more cohesive Royal Navy that will take on the Army tonight.

It will be fantastic to have Inter Service Rugby back and Plymouth promises to be a great venue for it. 


Royal Navy Under 23 side to face the Army:

1. AET Jack Johnston, 2. AET Connor Thurgood, 3. AB Dom Cleverley, 4. AB Dan McAdams ©,  5. AET Andy Watson,  6. OC Jack Mills, 7. Lt Keaton Leyland-Jones RN,  8. AET Sam Jenkins,  9. AB Bailey Angliss,  10. AET Jay Toogood, 11. Mne Kane Teear-Bourge, 12. Mne George Prentice,  13. AB Ollie Raynor, 14. AET Jack Davis, 15. Mne Rory Dingemans

16. AB James Wales, 17. LH Jack Harvey, 18. AET Ben Rees, 19. AB Sanders-Mortimer, 20. AB Rhys Owen, 21. AB Charlie Penrose-Toms, 22.AB Cameron Dale, 23. OC Freddie Marsden