London Welsh will complete their preseason campaign this weekend with a trip across west London to play Ealing Trailfinders Academy (at Brunel University Sports Grounds).
The Exiles have of course already tested the squad with two pre season fixtures , which were a 73-7 defeat to Pontypridd and last weekends 35-17 loss to National 1 outfit Rams RFC in Reading.
The Trailfinders Academy, which has a partnership with Brunel University have played two preseason games so far with a defeat away to Pontypridd and another loss to Rosslyn Park’s 2nd XV.
Again, there are links between the two clubs, which has been the case throughout all pre season fixtures, as current London Welsh backs coach, Steven Shingler, is also the club captain of Ealing Trailfinders.
This Saturday could also potentially see a reunion between Welsh and former player, Dan Hiscocks.
The scrum half played for the Exiles during their London 2 campaign (19/20) and played an integral part in helping Welsh secure promotion to London 1 South (Dan remains a close friend of the club).
The current academy director at Ealing Trailfinders is Gareth Rise, who is also the Director of Rugby at Camberley, the team that pipped Welsh to top spot last season and with whom we will do battle again this coming season.
This Saturday’s match will be a two o’clock kick off and will be played at Brunel University RFC, Uxbridge, UB8 3PQ.
Welsh will look to welcome back yet further players who have been missing from one or both of the pre season fixtures so far. However, definitely missing out will be Matt Pollen and Ed Couzens through injury, the latter sustaining a concussion in Reading last weekend.
Aussie Rohan Pixley (player of the season for our last 2 campaigns) is set to make his first appearance in preseason and ahead of the league start next weekend. Also set for his first outing of the year is back three man Sion Cowdy, Cowdy has returns having been on the 7s circuit globally during the summer. Captain James Buncle returns from injury to the front row mix and we should see returns to action for Daf Manley, big crowd favourite Andy Black, Ben Watts in the 2nd row may get his first start, Robbie Fraser (the Oxford blue) is pushing for a return at 9 and there could be a 1st XV debut from winger Morgan Churchill. Our Wales u18s back rower Ben Davies also returns to the squad.
After this weekend’s fixture, London Welsh will begin their season in the Regional 1 South Central with a trip to Maidenhead.