The 2016-2017 league rugby season gets underway this coming Saturday (10th) as Minety 1st XV and Minety II XV begin their league campaigns against Pewsey Vale and Warminster II XV respectively.
Both matches will kick off at 3pm on what is sure to be a lively day, coinciding with the 5th Annual Minety Beer and Cider Festival.
The 1st XV return to Dorset and Wilts Division 1 action after the summer break with an encounter with newly promoted Pewsey Vale. The visitors remained unbeaten in D&W2N last year, winning 19 of their matches and drawing the other. During the course of their magnificent season, Pewsey Vale scored 852 points against a meagre 172 conceded and finished the season 33 points above second placed Avon Vale in the division. In addition to their league successes, Pewsey Vale also lifted the Dorset and Wilts Plate in a final played alongside the pitch that saw Minety capture the Dorset and Wilts Vase in their epic encounter with Lytchett Minster back in December.
New club coach Richard Hall knows that his Minety teams will face a stiff examination from the two visiting teams. The 1st XV spent much of last season in or around the top of the table last year and, but for a dramatic lapse in form just around the New Year when the team were unable to play nor train at Minety because of the waterlogged state of the pitches, might have been in with a chance of toppling eventual champions Combe Down, who Minety defeated in the final match of last season.
In Dorset and Wilts Division 3 North (D&W3N) Minety II’s will be hoping to inflict another defeat on Warminster II’s, who they emerged 38-31 victors over back in April. The visitors eventually finished the 2015-6 campaign in 5th place with 54 points, 12 more than Minety II’s, who claimed 7th place with their 42 league points.