First up Chinnor.
The team started well, putting the opposition under constant pressure. The forwards worked hard up front and it was the pack that produced the first try of the tournament through Mark Smith. Chinnor came close a couple of times late on but determined defence on the line resulted in the first win.
Next up was Banbury B
The team controlled this one from start to finish rarely affording Banbury an opportunity to run with the ball. After a sustained period of pressure from the forwards, Jasper darted over for the first try. In the second half Tom then received the ball wide on the left and raced down the touch line only to be stopped 15 yards out. The forwards recycled the ball quickly and it was sent down the line for Christian to score in the right hand corner.
Massive opposition once more but Bicester did not let that affect them. Constant pressure on the opposition from both forwards and backs from the start meant that Buckingham rarely threatened the Bicester line. It was only a matter of time before Bicester scored and after a good forward move Jasper darted over for the winner.
Another grudge match as Stratford put Bicester out of last year's tournament. Bicester did not allow Stratford any time on the ball and for the majority of the match we were camped in the Stratford half. Once again determined forward play resulted in a quick ball for the backs to swing it out wide for Garin to touch down in the corner for what proved to be the winner.
Bicester topped group B and went into the final against the winners of group A, and the tournament favourites, Banbury.
Final v Banbury A
From the whistle Banbury put Bicester under relentless pressure and it wasn't long before Banbury's star player touched down. This was soon followed by their second when their influential centre cut through the Bicester defence to touch down. The lads kept their heads up but were unable to prevent a third try before half time. The second half started much the same as the first with Banbury scoring early to make it 20 - 0. The team started digging deep and played for pride for the last 5 minutes. Great forward driving and working the ball through the phases resulted in Bicester grinding their way up field towards the Banbury line. A quick ball back and slick hands through the backs resulted in Ben dotting down in the corner. A final lost but a performance on the day for the team to be proud of.
Chinnor 0 - Bicester 5 scorer Mark
Banbury 0 - Bicester 10 scorers Jasper, Christian
Buckingham 0 - Bicester 5 scorer Jasper
Stratford 0 - Bicester 5 scorer Garin
Banbury A 20 - Bicester 5 scorer Ben
Although Bicester didn't win it, coming second at the Banbury festival is a fantastic achievement and one the squad should be proud of. Thanks to our supporters as well who could possibly have been heard back in Bicester during the course of the day.
Well done all!