Sydney University Football Club is marking its one hundred and fiftieth year with a seven game tour of the UK and Ireland. The Australians will run out at Iffley Road to play the Blues on 25 November (kick off 1915).
After enjoying one of their finest domestic seasons to date, Sydney University will travel to the Northern Hemisphere confident of completing a “Grand Slam” tour. The Australian tourists have produced a large number Wallaby test players including world class Nick Farr-Jones, Phil Waugh and Israel Folau.
Oxford University will not want to be the tourist’s first scalp. The Blues showed SUFC their quality by thrashing Major Stanley’s XV 40-14, in their most recent match. The Blues will have also taken confidence from strong performances against Worcester and Russia. The Sydney University fixture is Oxford University’s last home game before the annual Varsity Match, where the Blues will be looking for an unprecedented fourth consecutive win against arch rivals Cambridge at Twickenham on 12 December.
Jacob Taylor, the Australian 7’s vice captain, left Sydney University last year on a scholarship to Oxford and will be keen to impress. After a barn storming game against Major Stanley’s XV Taylor said “I am really looking forward to facing some old team mates, but I am not going to allow the familiarity distract me. With the Varsity game around the corner I cannot afford to slip up in any aspect.”
Taylor is not the only Oxford man familiar with the tourists. Fellow students Sean Morris and Will Rowlands were part of a World University Barbarian’s team that played SUFC at ANZ Stadium before the deciding game of the 2013 Lion’s Series. Despite Morris and Rowlands both scoring tries, SUFC kicked off their 150th year in style with a 34-20 victory.
One of the other fixtures on the Australian’s seven-match tour will have the Blue’s full attention as SUFC travel to Cambridge on 2 December.
Oxford University’s captain, John Carter, added: “It’s always a pleasure to welcome our antipodean cousins to Iffley Road, but the pleasantries stop at kick off.”