Colts win at Cambridge
Cambridge 11 Shelford 20
Having lost the opening game in their EC cup pool, every cup match is a must win for Shelford. With local rivals Cambridge unbeaten, this was an even more must win match. It proved to be a match of Cambridge pragmatism against Shelford ambition. In the end ambition won, but it was a close game throughout.
Shelford started strongly, kicking off to Cambridge Shelford pressure in defence prevented Cambridge exiting. The pressure forced a knock on close to the try line, Shelford moved the ball left and Angus Thompson crashed over wide out, 0 – 5 after only 2 mins. Cambridge then showed their hand in how they intended to play. Kicking long Cambridge applied defensive pressure of their own. Shelford struggled to break out of their half, eventually conceding a penalty around the 10m line, and the big boot of the Cambridge 10 made them pay, 3 – 5 on 8 min. Cambridge used their kicking game effectively pinning Shelford in their own half and with the wind causing all sorts of problems in the line out Shelford were stuck. When they did eventually break out Shelford made ground on the right wing eventually being held up over the try line. From the resulting scrum Shelford 8 picked from the base and took the ball blind, with the 9 and wing in support. They weren’t quite on the same wavelength and the move was stopped. However, Cambridge were penalised for offside, Shelford went quickly and wing Ed Hughes dived over in the corner, 3 – 10 after 18 min. More kicking from Cambridge got them into the Shelford half, and another penalty for offside brought Cambridge back to 6 – 10 and the score into half time.
The second half started with Cambridge applying pressure through their kicking game and Shelford forced to defend. Olly Jury eventually broke out and chipped through, but the ball went into touch. After so many lost lineouts, Shelford managed to win the ball back with Nathan Oram taking the ball in the air. Shelford moved the ball right, retaining it well though a couple of phases, before Nick Budenburg broke through for Shelford’s third try, 6 – 15 and the comfort of taking the advantage beyond a converted try. Just as well as Cambridge had a strong period of pressure, turning Shelford over and grabbing a try of their own. Unusually, their conversion kick was unsuccessful, but they were back in the match at 11 – 15. Shelford hit back with a well worked try from a series of pick and go plays, Olly Elmsley barging over with the final score of the game, 11 – 20, and Shelford’s cup hopes still alive.
Shelford squad: Jordan Barnes, Jack Biard, Nick Budenberg (1 try), Toby Carmichael, Oliver Emsley (1 try), James Gould, James Groser (captain), Ed Hughes (1 try), Ollie Jury, Kai Land, Kallum Mulhall, Nathan Oram, Josh Parkhouse, Morgan Pavlovic, Finn Priddle, Zeb Rayner, Pim Remijn, Zain Tariq, Angus Thomson (1 try), Rory Webster