Tring High Swing Low
It has been a season of ups and downs, highs and lows for a number of clubs in N3L&SE and the final league Saturday repeated the dose.
TJs travelled to Tring knowing that 8th place was secured but needing a performance to end on the up with the Kent Cup Final against OEs still to be played. Tring though had league survival to play for and the final 13-9 scoreline gave them hope if Westcliff lost to title chasing Barnes. Sadly for Trng that did not happen as Westcliff edged Barnes 8-7 to ensure their own survival and despite the loss the losing bonus point kept Barnes in second and a play off berth.
Bury St Edmunds, as expected, eventually cruised to the title with a 61-10 mauling of Gravesend in front of a massive home crowd put at 1500+ by many observers. IN the end BSE won the division by 7 points from Barnes with LIWG 1 point further back in third. Amazingly BSE lost 6 games on the way to the title a number unheard of in previous seasons but a reflection of how this division has played out all season.
CS Rugby had already been relegated the previous Saturday and their disappointing season was capped off by East Grinstead in a 19-50 home defeat. Amersham & Chiltern beat Hertford 30-19 but still went down as results went against them elsewhere. LIWG beat Chichester 28-19 whilst Guernsey ended the season with another win this time beating Combe 42-28. THe final results and league table can be viewed here
So Bury St Edmunds are promoted to N2S whilst Barnes face Exmouth from N3SW in the pllay off. CS Rugby 1863, Amersham & Chiltern and Tring are relegated.
The N3SW Champions were our old friends Redingensians. In N3M South Leicester romped to the title by 24 points over Hinckley and in N3N Sale edged out Sandal by 3 points.
In National 1 Ealigh had already secured the title but second placed Rosslyn Park took some of the gloss off with a 15-19 victory. Coventry finished third after beating Blackheath 49-20 who dropped to fifth after a long run in fourth. At the other end of the table Macclesfield and Tynedale are both down but the last spot remains undecided between Cinderford and Old Albanians. Cinderford face Esher at home whilst OAs take on Tynedale on the last Saturday of the season next weekend.
In National 2(S) champions Henley also slipped up with a 22-28 defeat at home to Worthing. Bishops' Stortford remain in the playoff spot although they very nearly made a mess of things in a 26-27 win at league strugglers Southend. That means both Taunton and Dorking remain in the hunt for second spot after 19-30 and 62-19 victories over Launceston and Dings respectively. BS have a 2 point cushion in second and play Launceston at home in their final game. Dorking have Henley whilst Taunton play Cambridge - it's BS's to lose then really. At the bottom Shelford lost 33-8 to Chinnor to go down along with Dings. The third relegation spot goes to the final Saturday now after Lydney beat Redruth 29-17 and it's between Lydney and Southend now. Canterbury are safe but still lost to Cambridge 56-49 in an amazing game whilst OEs and Clifton drew 17 all.
Shelford accompany Dings for the drop after they lost out 33-8 at Chinnor, whilst the battle for the last of the relegation places will go to the last weekend and is between Southend and Lydney, who won 29-17 at Redruth. Canterbury’s safety is confirmed despite defeat at Cambridge in a high scoring 56-49 encounter. In the last of the fixtures Clifton and Elthamians played out a 17-17 draw.
In National 2(N) Ampthill have not given up on the title just yet as they are 3 points behind Hull Ionians going into next Saturday. Ampthill take on bottom and relegated Stockport whilst HI travel to sixth placed Caldy.
Wimbledon secured the London 1(S) title with an emphatic 65-7 defeat of fourth placed Sidcup whilst Chobham reached the play offs with a 31-10 defeat of Havant. Sutton & Epsom missed out despite a 19-29 win over Guildford. At the bottom Basingstoke and Hove had already dropped but the third spot was between Twickenham, Cobham, Dover and Gosport & Fareham. As it was Twickenham's 10-20 win at Cobham took them out of the drop zone and sent their hosts down instead. Dover routed Basingstoke 90-7 and Gosport & F beat Hove 39-7.
So Wimbledon come up as Champions whilst Chobham face London 1N bridesmaids, Eton Manor after Colchester secured the title.
Maidstone had already won London 2 (SE) and have an Internediate Cup Final at Twickers to look forward to as well. Their 28-45 win at Colfes meant they ended the league campaign unbeaten to consolidate their on field efforts in some style.
The leagues ended for others last weekend so Maidstone take the L2SE title whilst Medway were runners up. Medway now face London Cornish, runners up in L2SW where Tottonians took the title. Aylesford Bulls were relegated from L2SE some weeks ago.
In L3SE Horsham were crowned Champions whilst Dartfordians ended as runners up. Both come up to L2SE next season whilst at the other end Hastings & Bexhill, Lewes and Park House go in the other direction
In Kent 1 Cranbrook were also already up as Champions but Sheppey and Beccs were fighting it out for the play off spot. Sheppey in the end came through in a 82-24 defeat of Beccs. Bexley and Sittingbourne were relegated. In Kent 2 New Ash Green and Brockleians come up in that order.