Only a win will do!
“Only a win will do” was the battle cry from Dave Pascoe as he named his squad to face the Marine Nationale. This is a special fixture that captures the interest of rugby fans around the world, and on Wednesday night the two sides will go toe to toe in Plymouth.
The Navy will be approaching the fixture full of confidence after two outstanding wins over Exeter Braves and British Police, and Dave Pascoe has rewarded performance in his squad selection.
Josh Terry returns after a three year absence due to pilot training; he joins Ben Priddey and Plymouth Albion’s Chris Robinson in the front row. Ben Watson makes up the second row with the new Captain, Scott Makepeace. Sam Matavesi returns from Fijian international duty to start at open side, and Jarrad Hayler starts at number eight replacing injured Dave Fairbrother. Ed Pascoe completes a powerful pack.
Half backs Gareth Rees and Greg Lloydal will lead the backs and marshal the midfield of Seta Raumakita and Brad Janes, who wins his first cap. Also winning his first cap, Craig Duncan starts at full back and Dimmock-Williams and Myers start on the wings. Beasley, Willman, Kirwan, Spencer, Johnson, Coy, Bridgen and Chambers make up the bench.
“I can’t over emphasise the importance of this fixture” said the Assistant Director of Rugby, Scott Ashley. “We haven’t beaten the French in the last five attempts and we have the opportunity to correct that on home soil”. The boys have been outstanding and they’re in a really good place”.
The British and French are very close allies, but when the whistle goes at Brickfields on Wednesday night expect both teams to leave nothing on the field.
4. Watson *
Words: Oliver Mason
Images: Royal Navy Rugby Union © John Walton