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Redruth Rugby player to Captain the Royal Navy at Twickenham

26 April 2017
Redruth Rugby player Ben Priddey is to captain the Royal Navy Rugby Team in front of capacity crowd at Twickenham.

Redruth hooker, Ben Priddey is the Captain of the Royal Navy Rugby team for Saturday’s fixture and season finale against the Army at Twickenham. Ben has had a great season with Redruth this year, with the Reds finishing 5th in National League 2 South.

This is the second year that Ben has led the Royal Navy side for the Inter Services, with the joy of winning the inter-services last year, the first time since 2010. Last year, the most important Royal Navy match of the season, the ‘Army Navy’, saw honours even, with the game finishing in a draw.

This year, the Navy hope to go one better and beat the Army. It is going to be tough challenge though. The Navy lost their opening inter services fixture against the Royal Air Force 16 points to 14, sweet revenge for the Air Force who lost by one point last year.

Ben is positive. When asked about how he sees the match playing out he said that it is going to be tough, but the Navy will win. Confidence is high throughout the whole squad.

Army v Navy Rugby Union at Twickenham Stadium

3pm Saturday 29 April 2017

Ben says that everyone is ready and optimistic. They have trained hard since the squad got together in February and there is a great team spirit.

He says that there are no outstanding players, just the Navy way of everyone working together, as a team and giving it their all for their ‘oppo’ - Navy slang for good friend and ship mate.

Despite many of the squad playing at a high level, Ben says that playing for the Royal Navy at Twickenham is an amazing honour. The stadium is full to capacity with an expected crowd of 83,000 spectators and an atmosphere that is out of this world.

This Army Navy is particularly special with it being the 100th anniversary of the fixture. The Army hold more honours than the Navy and with last year being a 29 all draw, this match has all the making of a real battle.

Ben is not the only Navy team member playing his rugby in Cornwall. Sam Matavesi, the Camborne back row forward and Fijian international, now works in logistics for the Royal Navy.  

Ben Fox is a Corporal in the Royal Marines and plays for Redruth, along with Lieutenant Mat Bowdan. Ed Pacoe, a Royal Marine bandsman, is a back row forward with the Cornish Pirates.

The squad have been based in Gosport, Hampshire since February, where they live and train together until the final match and culmination of the season this Saturday.

They have had a number of matches before the inter services, including playing Richmond Vikings, Glasgow Hawks and the French Navy.

All of these matches are important, but the inter–services are the icing on the cake, with the Army – Navy being the most important match of all.

After the match, both teams will attend a dinner to celebrate 100 years of rivalry on the rugby pitch.

All the best to both teams, kick off is at 3pm, this Saturday 29 April at Twickenham Stadium.

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