Stamford triumph ahead of key clash

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Brackley 7 Stamford 40

STAMFORD breezed past Brackley as a warm-up to tomorrow’s big clash at home to second-placed Biggleswade.

Third-placed Town must win to keep alive their promotion hopes and will aim to carry through last weekend’s form.

They were only able to travel with 17 players on Saturday due to a long injury list but it was all they needed to win by a comfortable margin.

Hard pitches suit Stamford’s 15 man rugby and, with the sun beating down, the early exchanges were an evenly fought affair.

That changed after 10 minutes when Stamford’s Ross Cutteridge exploited a gap to canter in under the posts. Laurent Ross duly converted.

Brackley were next on the score sheet from a driving maul gained from a lineout. The conversion levelled the score but not for long as from the resulting kick off Richard Thompson beat the first defender to put the in-form Cutteridge away for his second try of the afternoon.

Although Stamford did not play to their usual standard they managed to find gaps regularly enough to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

Adam Rimmer broke down the right flank just before half time and offloaded to Smith who was caught five metres out. Rimmer picked from the base of the ruck to dive over for a five- pointer.

The second half saw good counter-attacking play as Brackley kicked a lot of ball away. This allowed Ross to show his pace and put over two tries of his own. This was followed by a try from Frank Wiese after an especially winding run.

Stamford’s defence - apart from the one slip resulting in the Brackley try – was strong and when Town went down to 14 men they still hardly conceded a yard.

Ross enjoyed a good day with the boot, converting five from six.

Bruce Parker won the club’s Westside Gym and Jollydale Cider Player of the Month for February

Wellingborough OG 29

Stamford College OB 17

College travelled to Wellingborough OG last Saturday in what has been a competitive and enjoyable fixture over the last few seasons.

In the baking hot sun both captains jumped at the referee’s offer for water breaks every 20 minutes.

College started the game slowly and found themselves two tries down within the first ten minutes and under a barrage of pressure.

The lads regained their composure however and enjoyed much of the possession and showed some good attacking play for the remainder of the half.

Their lineout was strong throughout and the scrum became more impressive as the game went on.

Inspired by the half time words of the injury side-lined club captain Carl Walker, the lads attacked from the whistle with belief and despite conceding a try they scored two good ones of their own, with Michael and Pattinson, scoring their much deserved first tries for the club.

This brought the score to 19-10 but the opposition scored another try despite having a man sin-binned for ten minutes.

College never give up however and another first try for the club, this time for Andy Emmins made the final score 29-17.

Captain James Tindall said: “We could not have asked for more from the boys today they gave 100 percent throughout and there are plenty of positives to take into next week’s vital home game.”

Stamford COB: Gosney, Hickman, Michael, Wright, Emmins, Moss, Pelech, Tindall, Briggs, Brassey, Young, Birks, Pattinson, Chapman, De Salis.