Director of Rugby Mark Lavery has confirmed that Ampthill will again play local rivals Bedford Blues in a double-header of pre-season friendlies.
Ampthill will welcome Mike Rayer’s Blues to Dillingham Park on Saturday, August 28 for a 3pm kick off.
Ampthill then travel to Goldington Road for their final pre-season friendly ahead of the 2021-22 Championship season on Saturday, September 11, again kick off 3pm.
Bedford had the better of last year’s exchanges and won the #Battleof Bedfordshire series 2-1 with a strong pre-season win at Dillingham Park and then a deserved victory in the league at Goldington Road on the final day of the season in May.
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Mike Rayer has recruited a very strong squad for the coming Championship season and these games will be a stern test for the Mob.
Head Coach Paul Turner said: “Our pre-season games with Bedford always give us a good indication of where we are in terms of preparation.
“I think the players enjoy them as much as the supporters and it’ll be great to play both games in front of full houses at Dillingham Park and Goldington Road this year!”
Tickets for the game at Dillingham Park are on sale via the club website and Ticketing Partners Venueserve.
Turner is also pleased to confirm the signing of two forwards on loan from Wasps for the 2021-22 Championship season – Zac Nearchou and Theo Vukasinovic.
Prop Zac, 20, and Lock Theo, 25, join as Ampthill prepare for their third season in English rugby’s second tier.
Zac has been capped by England at U18 and U19 and spent the 2020-21 season on loan in Italy with Benetton playing in Pro 14.
The young tighthead joined Wasps’ Academy aged 14 from Henley Hawks RFC and played for Rotherham Titans in National One.
Recovering from an Achilles injury back in March, Theo has previous Championship experience with London Scottish and represented Loughborough University in National One whilst studying for his degree.
He joined Wasps on completion of his studies and ahead of the 2019-20 season. He is described as a “modern-day second row” and a “great all-round athlete”
Full back Tom Hudson, 26, joined Ampthill on loan from Gloucester last season and has now signed a one-year contract.
In his seven appearances since his debut in March, Tom has scored two tries, including a fine individual effort against old club Hartpury at Dillingham Park.