Oxford is a city of many things. World-renowned academics, beautiful architecture and club nights where ‘Cotton-Eyed Joe’ and ‘the Grease Mega-Mix’ are played both shamelessly and consistently. It’s probably less well known however for playing host to one of England’s twelve Premiership rugby union teams.
Since May 2012, London Welsh RFC have played their home games at the Kassam Stadium, home to Oxford United and situated just four miles from the city centre (only a 20 minute cycle or for the less dynamic types amongst us, a short bus ride away).
Welsh were unlucky to be relegated in their first campaign in England’s elite rugby union league back in 2012/13. They were handed a five point deduction after fielding an ineligible player which seemed to knock the stuffing out of the Dragons’ final few months of the season and meant they eventually finished twelfth, ten points adrift of safety. There were high points to the club’s first campaign in the top flight however, notably early wins against the likes of Exeter, Sale and Bath.
After gaining promotion following just one season in the Championship, Welsh are back in the big time and looking for a much less drama-filled campaign as they seek to avoid relegation this time around. With the likes of ex-All Black scrum-half Piri Weepu and former England international Olly Barkley both arriving in Oxford last summer, head coach Justin Burnell will hope that safety is a realistic prospect.
After a tough start to the season that has seen them pitted against some of the strongest teams in the league, the Exiles are looking to get their campaign back on track and are inviting two lucky OxStu readers the chance to witness their planned revival.
The club are giving away a pair of free tickets for their Premiership game against Leicester Tigers on 23rd November and to be in with a chance to win, all you have to do is answer the simple question below and send in your answer to [email protected] with the subject line of ‘OxStu Sport Competition’. The winner will be announced on 5th November and all replies have to be in by 4th November.
So, students of Oxford, crawl out from your book-filled nests, see more than the four walls of your college’s library and win the chance to witness elite level rugby union on your doorstep.
Who won the Aviva Premiership final in 2014?
b) Northampton Saints