Cambridge Rugby Head Coach Richie Williams has named his side to face Bedford Blues in round five of the Championship on Saturday afternoon.

Maintaining most of the names from round four’s clash with Hartpury, Sam Edwards is awarded his first start for the blood and sand and Kwaku Asiedu steps into the number 14 jersey. Tom Hoppe, Huw Owen, Gareth Baxter and Matt Dawson are also given a starting nod.

Looking back at last week’s heart-breaking defeat to Hartpury, Williams noted the positives taken, including a key players inclusion in the Championship Team of the Week;

“Despite picking up four tries and arguably producing some of our best attacking rugby last weekend, we unfortunately failed to register our first league win of the campaign against Hartpury.

“In saying that, we must focus on our application and intent in the second half in which we won 15-14. We produced some positive attacking rugby which was a direct result of another disciplined display from the front five, at both scrum and lineout. I believe that we have gained parity and got an advantage at scrum time, against every team that we have played so far. Both Billy Walker and Jake Ellwood have been outstanding, the former being included in the Championship team of the week. Huw Owen and Will Hobson were both excellent from the bench also.”

Also impressing in last week’s match was new signing, Eli Caven who maintains the full back position this week;

“Eli Caven scored another brace, taking his Championship tally to four. He is the joint second highest try scorer in the league, an encouraging achievement for our talented new signing.”

Of their next challenge, Williams commented;

“This weekend, we make the relatively short journey to Bedfordshire, to face attack minded Bedford Blues. They have made a strong start to the league so far, picking up wins against Cornish Pirates and Hartpury and losing a close encounter against Ealing Trailfinders.”

“It is well documented about the tempo in which they play. They have one of the best attacks in the league and are notoriously difficult to beat at home. In wings Sean French and Dean Adamson, they possess two excellent try scorers. Their attack is well marshalled by experienced half backs Alex Day and Will Maisey.”

Finally Williams discussed his selection decisions for round five, noting one particular players absence;

“After his promising debut off the bench last week, tight head prop Will Hobson has been recalled to Harlequins for their Premiership game, unfortunately ruling him out of selection.”

“Harry Morley returns to the bench and Tom Hoppe returns to the squad after a short-term injury. Huw Owen gets his first start with Jake Ellwood moving to the bench. Sam Edwards and Jamie Benson start at half back and Sam Hanks and Tom Hoppe form the centre partnership with Matty Williams dropping out of the squad.”

Cambridge face Bedford Blues at Goldington Road on Saturday 25 November at 3pm. Back on the road to Nottingham for round six, Cambridge return home in round seven on Saturday 16 December, welcoming Coventry to Ellgia Fields for their final home clash pre-Christmas.

Tickets to the match are on sale now and can be secured by visiting www.cambridgerugby.co.uk

Cambridge line up:

15| Eli Caven

14| Kwaku Asiedu

13| Tom Hoppe

12| Sam Hanks

11| Matt Hema

10| Jamie Benson

9| Sam Edwards

1| Huw Owen

2| Morgan Veness

3| Billy Walker

4| Kieran Frost

5| Gareth Baxter

6| Ben Adams ©

7| Matt Dawson

8| Geordie Irvine

Replacements:

16| Willie Priestley

17| Harry Morley

18| Jake Ellwood

19| Noah Sloot

20| Jared Cardew

21| Kieran Duffin

22| Steffan James

23| Joe Green