Good Performance to remain top of the league
On a rain spotted autumnal afternoon with the leaves around The Crofts turning gold the Old Leamingtonians turned in another golden 5 League point performance.
Old Leamingtonians Rugby Football Club Senior Mens' Match Report Saturday 6th October 2018
Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV v Woodrush RFC 1st XV
Result: Old Leamingtonians RFC 1st XV 45 - 24 Woodrush RFC 1st XV
On a rain spotted autumnal afternoon with the leaves around The Crofts turning gold the Old Leamingtonians turned in another golden 5 League point performance. After just five minutes play the dominant OL pack provided scrum half Toby Lord with excellent ball which he distributed to the three’s with Full Back, Oscar Heath, running a line straight through the opposition to score the first try which was converted by Henry Reynolds.
After another seven minutes OLs steamrollered a Woodrush scrum winning the ball and again feeding the threequarter line. This time it was Centre, Ciaran O’Connor, who crossed the line. Once again the try was converted by Reynolds.
It wasn’t long before OLs scored again when a poor Woodrush clearance kick was fielded by Number 7, Felix Heath, who ran through to the tryline. The conversion brought the score to 21 – 0.
Woodrush were in no mood for giving up and moved the ball into the OL 22 where fumbles by the OL defence allowed them in to score their first try. This was converted to make the score 21 – 7. OLs stung by this, went straight back downfield and second row forward Joe Talamini playing in his frequent role as an extra threequarter took a pass to collect yet another try. The conversion by Reynolds made the score 28 – 7.
From the Woodrush kick-off two of the home forwards collided and then OLs gave away a penalty in front of the posts which the Woodrush 10 duly converted to 3 points. 28 – 10. Moving back downfield OLs opted for a scrum rather than a kick from a penalty and once again moved the ball down the line for a fine try by Winger, Tom Eales, wide on the right. The try was not converted making the half time score OLs 33, Woodrush 10.
Shortly after the break OLs pressed again and at the Woodrush line the overpowering OL maul allowed Talamini to touch down and notch up his second try of the day. The score moving to 38 – 10.
For the next twenty minutes OLs completely lost their mojo and the game was pretty sterile in the middle of the park. Too many penalties were conceded which snuffed out any chance of attack and it was Woodrush who eventually broke the deadlock with a converted try under the posts making the score 38 -17. OLs at last woke up and another attack allowed No. 8, Hugh Melhuish to run in for try number 7, which when converted made the score 45 – 17.
Woodrush were not done yet and attacked with a scything run towards the posts which was terminated by a trailing leg by Talamini who paid the price with a yellow card and a seven point penalty try to Woodrush making the final score 45 -24.
This was a fine performance overall but once again poor handling a high penalty count could have been more costly. Slightly worrying was Oscar Heath leaving the field with a pulled hamstring which will hopefully be healed by the next league match in two weeks’ time since there is no league fixture next week as it is a cup weekend. Man of the Match was strong tackling back row forward Andrew (Smiler) O’Toole.
OLs are having a purple patch at present. For the second week running all three OL Saturday teams have won, (1st XV, Extras and Colts) and OLs still top the Midlands 3 West (South) League Table.
Report by Nick Crighton
4 Photos by Tim Nunan. 1. Hugh Melhuish 2. Joe Talamini 3. Ciaran O’Connor 4. Andrew O’Toole
OLRFC Press & Publicity Officer
OL's vs Woodrush