DORCHESTER travel to face Slough in the Southwest RFU Southern Counties Senior Vase Final hoping to make their next step towards Twickenham.

Having taken the Dorset & Wilts Senior Vase Final in January by overcoming Oakmeadians, Dorchester were then entered into the Southwest competitions.

If they win this game they will meet the winners of Gordano and Saltash on the 17th March for the Southwest Divisional Final in which a win would put them two steps away from a national final at Twickenham in May.

With a largely settled squad this season to pick from, coach Ben Parker has made one change to the starting line-up with George Foot reverting to his familiar position of winger and Matt Read returning to full-back.

Dorchester have named an experienced bench as Chris Elliott comes in to cover the front row for the first time this season following injuries, and the experienced Tom Gower also takes a place on the bench too.

With the luxury of full front row replacements both Luke Doherty and Mark Adams ready to join the action, Laurence Burch, Matt Fry and the speedy Jake Bosher are also called up as replacements.

Slough sit atop their league of Berks, Buck and Oxon Premier having only lost one game this season, whilst Dorchester sit atop the Wadworth 6X Dorset & Wilts One South.

Dorchester last played Slough in 1999 in the Southern Counties league winning on that occasion and coming out on top in the previous four times they played in the 90s.

The coaching team of Ben Parker and Rich Bament said: “We need to turn up and warm up well from the journey. Once the whistle goes we need to be straight into our game playing 80 minutes of Dorchester rugby.

“It will be tough in places and both teams will want to dictate the game and dominate to get the win. After last week we are acutely aware that we can be beaten if we step off the gas and relax.”

The club have filled a coach with players, family and supporters to head to Slough and hope to bring home the second trophy of the season so far, but the league and promotion still remain the ultimate goal this season.

The clubhouse will be open for those unable to travel.

Club chairman Nick Hodge is looking forward to a close game at Slough and seeing Dorchester progress to the possibility of the Twickenham final and the current squad making its mark in club history.

*Sunday will again have the junior section playing at Coburg Road as the under-12s take on Corsham in the Dorset & Wilts cup whilst the under-15s will lock horns with local rivals Bridport in the same competition.

Meanwhile both Weymouth and Bridport have no fixture.


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