Wharfedale and Stourbridge was the longest-running contest in National One until the Midlanders’ relegation two seasons ago.
In each of those two seasons they missed promotion by the narrowest margin, but have recently renewed their links with Worcester Warriors and will be optimistic of making it third time lucky.
In this, the first of two warm-up matches, the Wharfedale selectors, still deprived of cricketers and those on holiday, have named an experimental squad for the match (3pm). The absence of several regular players gives an opportunity to impress to several newcomers and promising youngsters.
Making a first appearance in the green shirt of the first team are winger Matt Van Sertima who made an impressive start in last week’s Foresters match, centre Cameron Hudson who is coming to Leeds University, and lock Simon Willet, joined from Otley.
Alex Powell, who filled in at lock in the latter part of last season starts in his favoured position of blind-side, with Josh Burridge playing at number eight in place of the temporarily absent Rob Baldwin. Josh’s younger brother Tom, another impressive debutant last week, is on the bench alongside first-timer from the Colts, scrum half James Otulakowski.
Wharfedale: Josh Prell; Matt Van Sertima, Cameron Hudson, Tom Davidson, Oliver Cicognini; Will Bell, James Doherty; Matt Beesley, Dan Stockdale, Adam Howard, Richard Rhodes, Simon Willet, Alex Powell, Chris Howick, Josh Burridge. Replacements: Joe Altham, Jake Armstrong, Tom Burridge, Harry Bullough, James Druce, James Otulakowski.