Senior Mens' Match Report Saturday 6th January 2018
Result: Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV 28 - 7 Woodrush RFC 1st XV
Old Leamingtonians began the second half of the season by continuing their recent fine run of form and they produced a deserved win against the Woodrush side that had beaten them well at the start of the season.
The game was only five minutes old when early OL pressure from the forwards saw the ball driven well into the Woodrush half of the field and some good ball handling by the backs saw winger Tom Eales receive an over-lapping pass to dive over for the opening try. The conversion attempt failed and within two minutes Woodrush took the lead when poor defensive play saw the visiting winger run almost unchallenged outside the whole OL back division to score beneath the posts. The try was converted to make the score 5 - 7.
On 20 minutes OLs regained the lead when a penalty was converted by fly half Bradley James following pressure by the OLs forwards who began to dominate in the loose play forcing Woodrush into defensive mistakes.
The constant pressure on Woodrush finally paid off when Hooker and Captain, Reece Jones, supported by his forwards forced his way through a number of tackles to touch down. This try was unconverted but gave OLs a half time lead of 13 points to 7.
The second half saw OLs dominate for long periods but Woodrush defended well and always presented a threat with break out rugby that gave OLs problems but the OLs defence was a match for every attempt and the switches in play saw some adventurous moves from their three-quarters, well supported by the forwards.
One such passage of play saw Woodrush in trouble in defence and good ball quickly released by the forwards to Bradley James saw the fly half collect the ball, spot a gap in the retreating defence to cross the line between the posts for OLs try number three. This try was converted to stretch the OLs advantage to 20 - 7.
Brad James kicked a further penalty when OLs again bullied the opposition into a mistake in their own 22 meter area bringing the score to 23 – 7.
Woodrush by this time were tiring and the constant pressure by OLs was rewarded when further good possession and drives by the forwards saw the ball quickly thrown along the home three-quarters for winger Liam Wellings to cross for the bonus try wide out on the right of the field.
The try was unconverted but moved Old Leams into a 28 points to 7 lead that was maintained until the final whistle.
This win keeps OLs promotion hopes alive in 4th place in the league and only 4 points off the top place. Next week OLs visit Old Wheatleyans on 13th January – kick off 2.15pm.
OLs completed their weekend with their Mini and Junior section taking over the Ricoh Arena as guard of honour and banner wavers for the Wasps v Saracens clash on Sunday 9th January. Picture attached.
Report provided by Denis Fisher
Updated 07:44 - 9 Jan 2018 by Chris McCarthy
OLRFC Press & Publicity Officer