Bambrook bows out as Chinnor suffer narrow loss in county derby

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Chinnor Rugby Club’s fourth XV went down to a narrow defeat in an Oxfordshire grudge match against Bicester’s third XV on Saturday September 21.

As well as being a local derby, the game was also notable as it was the final appearance for Mike Bambrook, affectionately known as “The Leaping Salmon.”

Before the game, Bambrook was accompanied onto the pitch by a few of his team-mates who under the captaincy of Matt Locke had an incredible 18-month run without losing a game earlier in the noughties.

Fittingly, Bambrook scored a try on his final appearance, with other scores coming from fellow second row Gordon Fennel and John Cann who also kicked two conversions.

Chinnor were leading by 13 points going into the final quarter, with Bambrook ensuring good line-out ball and generally having an impact at set-pieces.

Although Bicester won the game with a last minute score, the final result, 22-19 to the visitors, failed to put a dampener on an enjoyable day in which Chinnor said farewell to one of the club’s great servants on the pitch.