Saracens ready to fight Old Pats for Combination Senior Cup

CHELTENHAM Saracens may be underdogs in the Cheltenham Combination Senior Cup final against Old Patesians IIs tonight, but they know anything can happen in a cup final.

Saracens coach Mike Pitman has told the side to treat the final like any other league game and said that the club are looking forward to the challenge that National Three outfit Old Pats will pose at Prince of Wales (7pm).

Saracens secured promotion from Gloucester One this season, although narrowly missed out on the title at the hands of Bream after a 45-38 defeat to Longlevens in the final game of the season.

The King George V men narrowly defeated Tewkesbury 22-20 in the combination semi-final and are fully committed to fighting Pats for the Cup.

Pitman said: “It is a nice challenge, playing a club from a higher division but we know it will be a tough test.

“You never know what will happen and we don’t have too much to lose. It is not every day you play in a cup final and we are going to give it our all.

“There will be several Under-18 players in the squad as we are looking to bring them through to senior rugby for next season.

“We’ve just got to go out and do what we do, and hope that is good enough. We are fully committed and the boys will do all that is asked of them.

“We are aiming to improve and develop as a club and playing against sides like this is the best way to do it.”

Pats defeated Cheltenham North 51-19 in the semi-final to earn a spot in the cup final and have done extra training this week in preparation, indicating just how much this final means to the Everest Road men.

Pats first XV secured safety in National Three last weekend with a 29-15 win over Amersham and Chiltern and now coach Craig Jones wants to seal the season with silverware.

He said: “The boys are really looking forward to the game and now they want to be crowned the best team in Cheltenham.

“Due to the nature of our season and the number of injuries we had, all of these boys have had first team experience.

“I am confident these boys will want it as much as Saracens do. They are a lovely club and they have had a very successful season.

“I am sure they will compete against us to see where they stand.”

CHELTENHAM SARACENS: S Rimmer, W Smallman, D Richardson, J Lawrenceson, M Williams, B Harris, M Kelly, D Burnham, S Rowe, C Windley, W Dove, K Williams, T Patience, S Meheran, J McMahon (c). M Francis, K White, C Wilkinson, A Cresswell.

OLD PATESIANS: J Enderby, E Gardner, M Mcarney, R White, H Gunther, P Bennett, G Angell (c), K Blankley, H Howes, J Spry, B Vincent, M Mudway, C Duffin, J Fatuey, L Hathaway, W Tyler, A Ballinger, D Burrows, B Tupper, J Ballinger

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