Goode is expecting 
a tight test from the word go

Banbury Bulls head coach Matt Goode is anticipating a competitive league campaign
Banbury Bulls head coach Matt Goode is anticipating a competitive league campaign

Head coach Matt Goode feels this season’s Wadworth 6X South West One East will be the most competitive so far.

Banbury Bulls kick-off their campaign with home matches against two newly-promoted clubs.

Goode’s side entertain Windsor on Saturday and take on Buckingham at the DCS Stadium the following weekend.

Goode said: “Windsor won their league fairly comfortably last season so will be out to make an early statement against us as we’re one of the more established sides in this division.

“We’ve just got to focus on what we do. Our pre-season has gone very well, we’re in a good place.

“I think there will be five or six teams fighting it out, it should be the most competitive it has ever been. Last season was competitive but this one will be even more so.

“Old Patesians have come back down after comfortably winning this division a couple of seasons ago. Marlborough should be strong again and Old Centralians will be keen to make up for the disappointment of losing out in the play-off.

“We’re not going to set any goals until we’ve played each team once, then we can evaluate where we are.”

Joe Winpenny and Sam Stoop have retired and Pete Boulton is out for the season with a knee injury, so he will turn his attention to coaching this term.

New arrivals include scrum half Alex Cox, who has been capped by Switzerland, and returns to the club where he can play at wing or full-back, and scrum half Ben George who played for England schoolboys.

Second row Will Thurlow has arrived from Bicester, hooker Chris Davies from Oxford Harlequins plus Tom McDonald, who represented Midlands from junior to senior level.