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Must-win clash for Old Boys
SWINDON College Old Boys boss Mark Roshier has insisted his side must take something from the battle of the top-two with Stow tomorrow if they have aspirations to earn promotion and survive at a higher level.
Old Boys are gunning for promotion from the Berks/Bucks & Oxon Premier and currently sit second in the league, four points clear of nearest challengers Chipping Norton in the race to earn Southern Counties rugby.
Stow have all-but secured their own promotion as they hold a 13-point cushion at the top, but Roshier knows his side must pick up some points from the away clash to prove they are capable of staying up if they do win promotion.
“We have a tendency to stop teams who are on a winning run, and they certainly are on one,” he said.
“We did the same to Drifters and Thatcham last season when they came to us, and it’s going to be one of those games we need to win if we have aspirations to compete at a higher level.
“Really we need to be beating them or be within a score of them to prove to ourselves that we are beatable because they are the only games we can go by for next season.
“Thatcham and Drifters have gone up to Southern Counties and are in the middle of the table and look like staying up, and that is good for us because we beat them last year.”
While the Old Boys coaches are already tentatively looking ahead to next season, Roshier insisted their thoughts are still focussed on finishing the job in hand.
“I’m confident that if we do get promoted we will stay up, but now we have to finish the season and focus everything on that,” he said.
“We have two or three so-called easy games, and then Hungerford on the last day which could be a banana skin.
“Chipping Norton lost their last game so we have a bit of a cushion and they still have to play Stow as well, but we will have to see.
“We want to secure second and get promotion ourselves, and not finish third and rely on someone else not wanting to go up or something like that.
“All the teams we have to play have nothing to lose, and a lot are looking at next season so they will be dangerous.”