LAUNCESTON head to mid-table Lydney in Regional One South West this afternoon missing more than a third of their first choice line-up.

Lock Jake Crabb and scrum-half Adam Collings are both injured, Mitch Hawken has a family commitment, skipper Lloyd Duke is calving and Plymouth Albion loanee Conrad Burne is in London visiting family.

It means a real test of the All Blacks’ strength in-depth, however joint head coaches Ian Goldsmith and Ryan Westren have been able to get flanker Charlie Tummon and centre Joe Stansfield to head over from Cardiff where they are studying at university.

From last week’s starting 15, Andy Knight (prop), Alex Bartlett (lock) and Tummon all come into the side which also means George Bone switches sides to openside flanker and Tom Bottoms scrums down in an unfamiliar number eight role with Duke out and Brandon Rowley having to be deployed as a centre once more.

Rowley is given the captaincy for the first time with returning scrum-half Tom Sandercock his deputy.

Sandercock comes back in after missing last weekend’s defeat at Okehampton, and partners fly-half Glenn Coles.

The back three is the same with Dan Pearce and Archie Dinnis on the wings and James Tucker at full-back.

The bench is a youthful one with Jack Swain, James Slater and Ollie Tomkies making up the 18.

Drybrook are all but relegated but survived for another week after beating Old Centralians last Saturday.

Lydney have enjoyed an excellent campaign since effectively being promoted in the league restructure last summer.

The Severnsiders are a point ahead of the All Blacks with both sides having three games remaining.

When the two sides met at Polson Bridge back in the autumn, it was Lydney who ran out narrow 28-22 winners.

Lydney lost three of their first four outings at home but since then have won their last five, including a 50-33 victory over high-flying Brixham on February 11.

LAUNCESTON at Lydney: James Tucker, Archie Dinnis, Joe Stansfield, Brandon Rowley (capt), Dan Pearce, Glenn Coles, Adam Collings; Ethan Pearce-Cowley, Levent Bulut, Andy Knight, Leion Cole, Alex Bartlett, Charlie Tummon, George Bone, Tom Bottoms. Replacements: Jack Swain, James Slater, Ollie Tomkies.

Counties One Western West

BUDE head into their final three games of the season knowing that nothing other than five points will suffice against winless Falmouth.

The Seasiders realistically need to beat Falmouth and then win well at either Kingsbridge or Tiverton and pick up bonus points to survive.

Falmouth have picked up just three bonus points all season – none of which have been for finishing within seven – and even conceded last Saturday’s trip to Bideford.

Bude should win to go level on points with Plymstock who are above them, but the Oaks have the luxury of Falmouth away on the final day if needed.

However they will also fancy their chances of beating mid-table Wiveliscombe, which would mean Bude would need to win all three of their final games.

Bude are able to welcome back lock Chris Hill and flanker Ben Hancock which allows Ed Hilliam-Cooke to switch back to his favoured centre role, which in turn sees Olly Denford move to full-back.

BUDE v Falmouth: Olly Denford, Patrick Marks, Ben Tharme, Jack Horwell, Will Pharo, Olly Mounce; Jason Bolt, Rory Mead, Fraser Martyn, Chris Hill, Will Kingdon, Ben Hancock, Finley Fry, Freddie Saxton (capt). Replacements: Matt Williams, Luke Wilson, Charlie Watton.

Counties Two Cornwall

SALTASH’S season has been a strange one with several sides conceding to them, while three straight draws in February put pay to their title hopes.

But they can confirm the runners-up spot when they meet third-placed St Austell Seconds at Moorlands Lane.

St Austell arrive just two points behind with both sides having just one more game to play after this weekend.

However St Austell’s task is a visit from champions St Ives, so Saltash will be confident.

Mid-table Bodmin will hope to spoil the title party at St Ives. 

St Ives know a win will seal it, and should prove far too strong, but Bodmin can go down there knowing there’s no pressure on them.

Liskeard-Looe are level on points with Bodmin and will fancy their chances of sealing sixth when Helston visit Lux Park.

However, Helston arrive with three wins on the spin, and will back themselves to make it four.

SALTASH v St Austell Seconds: Ryan Cruickshanks, Will Morton, Danny Snook, Sam Snell, Jay Moriarty (capt), Lewis Stuart, Jack Pritchard; Simon Nance, Rob Walsh, Ryan Simmons, Tom Rixon, Devon Bennett-Murray, Lewis Wells, Phil Eatwell, Ryan Rayner. Replacements: Ben Simmons, Axel Nicks, Aidan Marshall, Billy Dover.

Counties Three Cornwall

LAUNCESTON Castles welcome Lankelly-Fowey to Polson Bridge looking to end their season on a high.

The Castles haven’t played much in recent weeks but are comfortably in mid-table, and have just one more outing this campaign, a trip to Camborne next Saturday.

Lankelly won at Bude Seconds last Saturday and have improved in recent weeks, while Launceston will have to do without Jack Swain, James Slater and Ollie Tomkies who are all with the first team.

Launceston are able to welcome back the likes of Dom Theobald, Tom Shilling and Martin Kneebone and name one of the strongest sides they’ve put out in a while.

LAUNCESTON CASTLES v Lankelly-Fowey: Mike Reddan, Richard Jasper, Mark Knight, Martin Kneebone, Tom Shilling, Tom Sandercock, Corey Sillifant; Walter Tucker, Nathan Ferrett, Simon Burden, Ollie Martin (capt), Ben Greene, James Norris, Pete Bebbington, Dom Theobald. Replacements: Josh Elias, Tom Ware, Mitch Hawken, Aaron Curtin, Matt Davey, Greg Gillbard.

Bude Seconds visit fourth-placed St Agnes looking for just a fourth win of the season.

They have been narrowly beaten by both Launceston and Lankelly in the last fortnight and will hope to compete well at a side who looked set for promotion at one stage.


Women’s NC 2 South West (West)

WITH Launceston Ladies having the weekend off before their title showdown at Exeter Athletic Dakota next Sunday, Bude Ladies will hope to make it three wins in four games against visiting Totnes (2.30pm).

The two sides met in South Devon back in February with Bude running out 24-12 winners and will fancy doing it again.

Bude put 85 points past bottom side Withycombe last weekend with Frankie Perry (4) and Lisa Allin (3) combining for seven tries.

Bude are three points ahead of fourth-placed Bideford, albeit having played a game more, and will be hopeful of extending that further, particularly as Bideford’s task is a trip to unbeaten Exeter Athletic Dakota.

BUDE v Totnes: Teagan Parnell, I Edworthy, Abi Knight, Beth Chapman, Holly tephenson, Caitlin Williams, Lisa Allin; A Lethbridge, Jess Davey, Hannah Pickard, Sam Pooley, Victoria Clarke, Alex Gallagher (capt), Phoebe Holden, Vinnie James.