It will be the first time the two sides have met at first team level when OEs makes the short trip to Molesey Road on September 2nd, and means an early return to his former club for player-coach Ian Kench who left Esher to join the Old Boys before the beginning of last season.
After their National One bow, Elthamians host a familiar face a week later at College Meadow in their first home game of the campaign (Sept 9th) when they take on National Two South champions and old friends Bishop’s Stortford.
The club then face a long trip to Lancashire to take on Fylde on September 16th before returning to the Meadow for the visit of Loughborough Students. An away game at Cambridge on September 30th completes a challenging first month in National One.
The first of two eagerly anticipated clashes against local rivals Blackheath takes place at College Meadow on December 16th with the return at Well Hall in the penultimate match of the campaign on April 21st.
Other fixtures of interest include the home clashes against newly promoted Caldy, who pipped our play-off opponents Sale FC to the National Two North title, on October 7th and the visit of big-spending Coventry, former club of OEs winger Dom Lespierre, on November 11th.
“I’m really happy with that start,” said Director of Rugby Gavin Lach, “and really excited to see the fixtures released. It’s a massive task ahead for the club in our first season at this level but it’s great to have some old friends and familiar faces in the first month in Bishop’s Stortford and Cambridge.
“These are exciting times for us, but we have to keep our feet firmly on the ground and forget about the Play-off victory now, as it will take a tremendous amount of hard work by everyone at the club to be ready for this challenge.”
National One fixtures for 2017/18 season
Sept 2 v Esher (A)
Sept 9 v Bishop’s Stortford (H)
Sept 16 v Fylde (A)
Sept 23 v Loughborough Students (H)
Sept 30 v Cambridge (A)
Oct 7 v Caldy (H)
Oct 14 v Darlington Mowden Park (A)
Oct 21 v Plymouth Albion (A)
Oct 28 v Rosslyn Park (H)
Nov 4 v Ampthill (A)
Nov 11 v Coventry (H)
Nov 25 v Hull Ionians (A)
Dec 2 v Birmingham Moseley (H)
Dec 9 v Old Albanian (A)
Dec 16 v Blackheath (H)
Dec 23 v Bishop’s Stortford (A)
Jan 6 v Fylde (H)
Jan 13 v Loughborough Students (A)
Jan 20 v Cambridge (H)
Jan 27 v Caldy (A)
Feb 3 v Darlington Mowden Park (H)
Feb 10 v Plymouth (H)
Feb 17 v Rosslyn Park (A)
Mar 3 v Ampthill (H)
Mar 10 v Coventry (A)
Mar 24 v Hull Ionians (H)
April 7 v Birmingham Moseley (A)
April 14 v Old Albanian (H)
April 21 v Blackheath (A)
April 28 v Esher (H)