Evening everyone and welcome to the final Mighty Barum Blog of 2023. Yes that’s right after this one I’m putting my feet up until the new year and there is no better way to end the year than a match between 2nd and 1st in Regional 1 South West and that is exactly what we have in store for you at Pottington Road this Saturday sponsored by our good friends at Groundforce, as Barnstaple Chiefs welcome Chew Valley to Pottington Road, kick off is 2pm and this could just be the game of the season, if it lives up to last weekends end to end stuff at Brixham you are in for a treat. Also playing this weekend are Athletic who make the short trip to South Molton as do the Buccaneers as they take on South Molton II, both looking for good wins to cement a strong first half to the season.
It is also Ryan Lee’s 150th appearance for the Chiefs. A former Barnstaple junior and Colt Ryan quickly established him as a Chiefs player and has been an ever presence in the team since then. Still only 25 there is plenty of time for Ryan to notch up anther 150 appearances.
There is plenty going on as we approach the new year with the Boxing Day matches ready for your attendance with the Chiefs and Colts visiting Bideford this year and the Tic’s at home kick off for that one is 11am with the bar open at 10.30. Details are at the end of this blog but you knew that already didn’t you.
What a season it has been so far, and has it flown by or what, I can’t believe it’s nearly Christmas already. Talking of flying some of our intrepid players will be out and about with Rudolph and the other reindeers as they accompany the round table and Santa sleigh on Tuesday the 19th in the Bickington area. See the map below for their route
donations would be great so if you can help support local charities within your area, please do donate what you can via our justgiving page:
We also have two big events coming your way in the New Year with Ladies Day on 2nd March and Sportsman’s Dinner with England and Exeter Chiefs Ben Moon detials below
Well, what a game that must have been to watch and even more adrenalin pumping for the players as well, but ultimately disappointment for the Chiefs by the merest of margins just 1 point and at the death as well, gutted probably doesn’t come close. This match saw the teams constantly swapping scores throughout the game. Tries from Brandon Moore and Mitch Turner helped Barnstaple negate the scores from Brixham to go in at half time 14-14.
Then the try fest happened with no less than 8 tries scored between them. Following an early score from Brixham the Chiefs got their first lead in the game with try by from Tyler Gordon-Oke, followed by another from Nat Bayet to lead 19-28. Back came Brixham with two of their own to go back in front 29-28. A third extended that lead until Jonathon Kelly returned the favour to nudge Barnstaple back in front 34-35 curtesy of Tyler’s 100% record of try conversions. A successful penalty towards the end pushed the lead to 34-38 before that heart-breaking moment in the last minute of the game when Brixham scored their 7th try to win 39-38.
I was breathless just writing that. It does mean that Brixham have not lost at home to any of the top teams this season with Chew Valley and Launceston both defeated, with Devonport yet to visit. The Chiefs did pick up two very valuable point and although they slip to second place they are just a single point behind Chew Valley who have that game in hand.
As for Chew Valley, they have been the pace setters so far this season and had a comfortable home win over St. Austell 44-12 last weekend and have been in impressive form throughout the season notching up 9 wins from their 11 games played so far. Their only loses so far have also been at Brixham and Launceston, having played just four games on the road so far this season, the second half of the season will test them.
Earlier in the season when these two teams met at Chew Valley it was today’s visitors who came out on top winning 35-19, so it is vital for the Chiefs aspirations of returning to National 2 rugby that they get a good result today. The stakes couldn’t be higher then, as Chew Valley make their first appearance at Pottington Road. Both teams will be on fire for this one which promises to be a classic with the winners getting a much-needed edge over their opponents in the league and with Devonport hard on their tails this does look to be a very exciting season ahead going into 2024.
The team to try for that win are…
barnstaple ATHLETIC and Buccs
Some disappointments and frustrations for Athletic since that win over Torquay almost two months ago. A 40-18 win over Honiton was quickly and unexpectedly followed by a 26-24 loss at bottom placed North Tawton. Athletic did bounce back from that with a crushing 7-43 win at Exeter Saracens on November 25th but that’s been it for the Tic’s as the last two games have both been called off. The home game against Old Plymothian & Mannamedian was postponed due to a frozen pitch whilst Ivybridge were unable to raise a side giving Athletic a home win, although I expect they would prefer to play rather than kicking their heels.
Today they are back on their travels with a short trip to South Molton who are currently in 6th place. Athletic are still 3rd and are only 4 points behind Devonport II with a game in hand. So, another exciting second half of the season for Barnstaple and a lot of great rugby on the horizon.
The Buccaneers also travel to South Molton to battle their 2nd XV.
Xmas Presents – final week to grab yourselves a bargain
We have a number of goodies for you in this festive season, just the present for the passionate Barum supporter in your life get your exclusive BRFC Merchandise
Need that final present for the Barum supporter in your life well we have not one but two priceless offers for a little tree present to set their hearts racing. We are now selling the brand new silk Barnstaple Rugby tie. We also have a limited number of Barnstaple Rugby Blazer badges for sale behind the bar.
We also have a number of other goodies waiting to be snapped up
BRFC ODD BALLS Towels – £18.00
BRFC ODD BALLS Adult Bobble hats – £15.00
BRFC ODD BALLS Child Bobble hats – £12.00
Adult Bundle – £30.00
Child Bundle – £25.00
available from the club on Tuesday or Thursday Evenings 5.30pm till 8.30pm (from Verity) or behind the bar on Saturdays and Sundays (when the club is open)
Well that about wraps up my final blog for 2023. I wish you all a fantastic Christmas and a prosperous New Year. Lets make sure we sing the loudest Barum Roar at the game today and make 2023 a memorable year. See you all in 2024