RUGBY UNION: Form pointed to big home win for Bourne
Bourne player-coach Dave Maudsley and his side gave themselves the ideal platform for Saturday’s Midlands Junior Vase final at home to Eccleshall with a dominant display against Deepings.
With a visit to league leaders St Neots to follow on March 24, Bourne could effectively have two trophies in the cabinet by the end of the month with just four points separating them from top spot in the table.
Maudsley said: “It’s just about winning and the feeling that the team has now is something we want to build on.
“However, promotion was one of the last things on our mind coming into the Deepings game because when I started here as player-coach 18 months ago, I didn’t see winning as all that important.
“Form is important, enjoyment is important and the results have come on the back of that.
“When games get a bit nitty gritty, you’ve got to try to rise above it because, in the past, we’ve allowed teams to get us to lower our standards.
“But on Saturday I was so confident that we would put on a good performance as we’ve been playing better each week.
“We went out and performed for 80 minutes and there’s no better preparation for a cup final than that.”
Scrum-half Sam Evison added: “Deepings had the psychological edge over us so we wanted to play our style of rugby and the intensity with which we started the game meant that they would have to play catch-up.
“We also wanted to keep the momentum going into next week’s cup final and play to our strengths.
I was so confident that we would put on a good performance as we’ve been playing better each week - we went out and performed for 80 minutes and there’s no better preparation for a cup final than that
“The way we’ve come on this season, after being a bit off the pace in the first couple of games, has been remarkable.
“We’ve got a proper unit now at a proper rugby club that I’m really enjoying.”
Meanwhile, former captain Guy Cunningham admitted that Deepings had been “played off the park” in their worst defeat since a 50-0 hiding from Wellingborough Old Grammarians in October 2015.
The only surprise on Saturday was that they kept 15 men on the pitch when, at times, their discipline and motivation to make it three derby wins this season threatened to boil over.
Cunningham said: “We concentrated more on the fact that it was a derby too much and the adrenalin pumping through some of the players forced us into making poor decisions which Bourne capitalised on.
“Our discipline was poor which inflated the scoreline but Bourne played us off the park and we need to congratulate them on their promotion.
“There are no excuses, they fully deserved it and the scoreline completely reflects how dominant they were.
“Bourne managed the game really well, whereas we managed it poorly, and they beat it us in all areas of the game.”
Deepings have to bounce back quickly with interest in both the Lincolnshire Cup and Hunts & Peterborough Cup, as well as having a chance of finishing third in the league with games to come at Brackley and St Neots.
Cunningham said: “We’ve got some tough games but we can still come away from the season with some silverware.”