RUGBY UNION: Demolition derby at Bourne
Talk of Bourne accepting second place look premature after the weekend’s results.
They put Stamford College Old Boys to the sword as leaders St Neots lost to Brackley – leaving Bourne just two points behind with everything to play for in their final game of the season at Thorney in a fortnight.
Despite missing several regular starters, there was certainly no indication of the side being weaker as they rattled up the points during an afternoon of free-flowing rugby.
From the kick-off Bourne’s game plan was clear and they played at a tempo Stamford simply couldn’t cope with – using an effective off-loading game and picking angles and gaps that were left by a defence in disarray.
Pick of the performances were wing George Venables and back row Adam Binns both crossing the line for hat-tricks.
Tries were in abundance on an afternoon where both the forwards and backs were able to enjoy a level of freedom.
Also dotting down were prop Chris Greenwood and back rowers Andrew Brown and Dan Smith, alongside centre Matt Holden and fly-half Drew Castle in his last game.
Replacement winger Dan Cheek crossed on his debut and his counterpart Josh Lynch also got two.
Lynch looked destined to match Venables and Binns with three tries but picked up an injury to his knee with just under 10 minutes left.
Already on 96 points, Bourne were set to get into triple figures but stand-in skipper Sam Harby agreed that the injury meant the 70-minute mark was a good time to bring the game to an end.
We played so quickly and looked to keep the ball alive with off-loads that the game was quite a bit more frantic than normal.
Bourne were disappointed to have conceded a try towards the end of the first half.
Brown said: “It was a great game in a number of ways but we had much of the possession and spent so long attacking so one blip in defence is perhaps understandable.”
Vice-captain for the day, scrum-half Sam Evison, had a busy afternoon and was given the man-of-the-match award by the visitors.
He said: “We played so quickly and looked to keep the ball alive with off-loads that the game was quite a bit more frantic than normal.
“As scrum-half I try to follow the ball and today that meant covering a lot of ground!”
Evison got a personal tally of 26 points, converting 13 of the 14 tries.
Player-coach Dave Maudsley added: “I’m chuffed to bits with the result.
“It’s nice to beat local rivals but actually I take little pleasure from putting that sort of scoreline on Stamford.
“They’re a good bunch of lads who’ve had a tough year.
“They should ignore the result and take credit for the way in which they stuck at the game.
“The two things that make this such a pleasing result are the way in which we bounced back from two very tough results and the fact that certain guys have had the sort of opportunity they deserve and in doing so they’ve shown talk of us having strength in depth is completely justified.”