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End of an era as Ayrton brothers leave Cambridge Rugby Club to join Bishop's Stortford

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James Ayrton, left, and Mike Ayrton have left Cambridge. Picture: Rich Marsham
James Ayrton, left, and Mike Ayrton have left Cambridge. Picture: Rich Marsham

Mike Ayrton and James Ayrton head a list of players leaving Cambridge Rugby Club this closed season.

The brothers have decided to seek a new challenge and will be joining fellow National League One side Bishop’s Stortford for the 2019/20 campaign.

It brings to an end a long association with Cambridge, who Mike Ayrton first joined in 2010 – he has gone on to make 217 appearances.

James Ayrton followed two years later and has appeared for the club 144 times.

“We did everything we could to try to keep them,” said Cambridge head coach Richie Williams. “Mike works in Bishop’s Stortford, they are both travelling quite a long way to come to Cambridge and I think every year they’re approached by Bishop’s Stortford.

“I think Mike made the decision initially and I think James wanted to play where his brother was playing.

“It’s a big loss for us because of the contributions they have made on and off the field, the number of games they’ve both played.We wish them all the best, and we’ve got Bishop’s Stortford second game of the season so that will be a bit of a side narrative when we play them in September.

“It’s a lot of caps and a lot of experience to lose from the team.”

Back Sam Yawayawa is departing after one year to join Chinnor, forward Gillian Benoy is heading back overseas to play second division rugby in France and flanker Keifer Laxton has been released.

Hooker Cameron Ruddock, pictured, is also heading for pastures new.

“Cam has relocated to play with his brother at Barnes,” added Williams. “I think for personal reasons he wanted to be closer to London and wanted to play in the same team as his brother and that’s a loss for us.”

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