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Blues' have high hopes at Harlequins

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RUGBY: Oxford trip offers hope of an early season boost for Newbury

NEWBURY BLUES have their sights set on making an early breakthrough when they make the short trip to Oxford Harlequins on Saturday.

It was not until February and their 18th game of the season that Blues recorded their one and only victory of last season, but director of rugby Andy Widdop was encouraged by his side's display in losing 34-6 to Weston-Super-Mare last week and has hopes of getting off the mark at Harlequins.

They were hammered 53-7 by promotion favourites Bournemouth last week and Widdop is hopeful that his side can capitalise. "If we can go there and get an early win this season, it will be a real corner turned and a major boost for confidence.

"The main thing about last week was that we showed that we can compete."

Widodp will keep faith with most of the side that figures last week, although Iain Herriott misses out and is replaced by Mark Spalton. Props Ben Louisson and Paul Hawkins are also in the mix, and winger Myles Roberts-Bailey may also be fit to return.

TADLEY have their first league game under new director of rugby Jim Kelly when they take on Aylesbury at Red Lane in Southern Counties North, while Thatcham travel to Stow-on-the-Wold in the Berks, Bucks and Oxon Premier Division and Hungerford entertain Littlemore in the same league.

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