By Blues Ed
December 13 2019
Our interest in the Championship Cup is well and truly over but we still have local pride at stake when we travel to Ampthill for the final pool game.
We also need to shape a side which can get us climbing the league.
There are four changes to last week's side with Oskar Hirskyj-Douglas in the centre and James Lennon at scrum half.
Robbie Smith returns at hooker and Dan Temm at number eight.
Blues: 15. Joe Green 14. Pat Tapley 13. Matt Worley 12. Oskar Hirskyj-Douglas 11. Ryan Hutler 10. Will Hooley 9. James Lennon 1. Sean McCarthy (Captain) 2. Robbie Smith 3. Henry Paul 4. Jordan Onojaife 5. Will Carrick Smith 6. Josh Buggea 7. Joe Atkinson 8. Dan Temm.
Reps: Jacob Fields, Joe Wrafter, Andrew Boye, Oli Curry, Alafoti Faosiliva, Grayson Hart, Sam Leeming, Charlie Reed
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?? We lost, again......
Indeed we did, though taking crumbs of comfort that potentially bodes well for Boxing Day given that game being at home in front of likely our best crowd of the season, and this match being effectively a dead rubber for us but not Ampthill - who are out of the cup because they didn't get a try bonus I believe.
However, we go into Christmas with a competitive game record of P12 W1 and there just can't be any hiding from that.
As I've pointed out before these cup rounds, our attack record is very worrying. In all 3 cup games, we again failed to score 20+ points, suggesting we haven't successfully sorted out a successful attack, even with two games that had little more than derby rivalry to play for, so could go more for broke. In fact, if we added all our points scored from the last 3 games, we'd still be more than 3 converted tries behind what Ealing scored against us in one game!
2/12 games scoring 20+ points (and those two games being one where we were 50 behind already and the other against Yorkshire Carnegie) is relegation form in a normal season where there isn't a club which bankrupted itself still playing.
I very much hope for Boxing Day, Hooley and Lemming have done their kicking practice and if there's not too strong a crosswind, we go for kick-able penalties a lot. At the moment, I don't have faith in us scoring more than 2 tries in a game when we've not already lost and I think winning on Boxing Day couldn't be more crucial for the rest of the season. So if that means watching a 15-14 game where Amps score two great tries while we just convert 5 penalties, so be it.
On plus side from today, sounds like Lennon had a good game again - hope he starts for Boxing Day if that was the case.
Boxing Day and we lose, we are in trouble!
Seriously, when you finish 3rd in the league surely the ambition is to then finish 2nd or at the very least 3rd again. Our ambition seems to be? Well we don't know what the plan is do we? I know we keep harking on about this but that really seems to be the fundamental issue.
We can right off this season now in honesty.
Then in a minute i'll get people moaning at me about moaning, it's inevitable
The blues could be so much more!