RUGBY UNION: Huge derby in sight for Deepings
Deepings tightened their grip on third place in the league after a fifth win in sixth matches at Leicester-based Aylestone St James.
Tries by Lewis Cannell, James Clarke, Chris Owen and Aram Jones, along with two Owen conversions, means that with one round of matches to go, the Green Machine are on course for a titanic A15 derby at Bourne on March 3.
Deepings took the dominant form shown against Wellingborough Old Grammarians with them to Aylestone to put them seven points behind their South Kesteven rivals.
Captain Lance Charity said: “It was a great display after we conceded a try in the first five minutes.
“Then we bounced back with two tries of our own in the first half with great phase play – although in the second half, Aylestone had the majority of the possession.
“But they never looked like scoring as we defended amazingly well with nothing breaking through.
To finish the game off in the last 10 minutes with two tries from the backs after soaking up all their pressure was outstanding
“Then to finish the game off in the last 10 minutes with two tries from the backs was outstanding after soaking up all their pressure and finding ourselves in their 22.
”To come away with the points from Aylestone was top work from the lads.”
Deepings now have a two-week break before hosting fifth-placed Bedford Swifts at Linchfield Road on February 17, while Bourne face a tricky trip to fourth-placed Brackley on the same day.
Bourne haven’t won on any of their last four trips to the Northamptonshire town but wins for both them and Deepings in their next round of league games will set up possibly the most important derby match ever between the two sides.
Guy Cunningham who played at scrum half for Deepings on Saturday, said: “Our bad start to the season (when they lost three of their first four league games) is what has driven us to lift our game.
“We weren’t utilising our best players earlier in the season, but now we’re playing to our strengths and the forwards have been dominating teams which has given us the platform to believe that we can do well.
“Everyone is so close and every team has got the same ability, so for us it’s been about turning out to practice.
“Bourne have shown the way this season but we’ve got the momentum at the moment so in the second half of the season, we’ll be trying to stay in the top three.”