Wiltshire Publications

Sat. 26th Jan. Dorset and Wilts Div 2 North Swindon College Old Boys 2nds 7 Westbury 16

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This week Westbury took the journey to Swindon to take on the College Old Boys, who back in October had beaten them in a close encounter at Knott Field.

The match started at a frantic pace with the Old Boys using their big forwards to carry the ball up through the middle of the pitch into the Westbury backs and then to offload to set up their own backs to score.  Westbury nullified this with a strong tackling game in which they often were able to ‘turn over’ the ball and set up their own series of plays.  After 6 minutes’ play, the Old Boys were caught offside, giving Westbury Captain Aaron Vaughan the chance of taking a long range shot at the uprights.  The penalty was duly kicked 3 – 0 to Westbury.

The game continued in similar fashion as before with Swindon’s forwards carrying well and ‘bashing’ their way into the defenders and Westbury doing well in holding them out.  After 20 minutes, Westbury were awarded a scrum in their own half from an Old Boys knock on.  The big Swindon forwards powered into the scrum and stole the ball and with good interlinking, charged through Westbury’s line to score a try, which was converted.  7 – 3 to the home side.  The rest of the half saw Westbury working hard to get another score and on 35 minutes they were rewarded with yet another penalty which Vaughan converted.  7 – 6 at the break and all to play for.

The second half continued in much the same fashion until 18 minutes in, when Aaron Vaughan was flattened with a vicious high tackle, for which the offending player was sent to the Sin Bin for 10 minutes. Vaughan recovered from the hit and to make matters worse for the Old Boys, kicked the resulting penalty.  Westbury were now leading 9 – 7.

Westbury now switched on and taking advantage of the extra man, scored a try. From a scrum on the half-way line the ball was moved to Lee McClerg who using his pace jinked his way up to the College’s 22 metre area where he was tackled.  McClerg cleverly off loaded the ball to supporting full back Ash Hart for him to score.  Up stepped Vaughan once more to add the extras.  16 – 7 to Westbury.

After this, the superior fitness of the Westbury team was beginning to show and by making the big Swindon forwards cover all areas of the pitch, they began to tire.  It was only by grim determination that they were able to prevent the visitors scoring again.

This win saw Westbury move closer to 2nd place in the league, only 4 points behind Marlborough 2nds, with a game in hand.

Next week Westbury are playing the postponed match against Melksham.  Although technically a home game for Westbury, with the agreement of both clubs the game is being played at Melksham under floodlights on Friday 1st February, 7.00pm kick off. 

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