Stamford Rugby Club make a winning start to their Midlands 3 East (South) season after victory at Daventry
Stamford got their Midlands 3 East (South) season off to a winning start on Saturday with a 34-9 away victory at Daventry.
They used pace and good running lines to score five tries after building on good pre-season preparation with a well-organised defence.
Head coach Aus Schwartz had to put himself into the team following the late withdrawal of Martin Bagnall but this did not affect the side which was in confident mood.
Early pressure from the home side was met with strong defence from Stamford who were unfortunate to concede a penalty which was converted to give Daventry the lead.
Town soon hit back when a George Nairn run was stopped which resulted in a line-out where they then released James O’Shea for what looked like a good try but the touch judge called it back for a foot in touch.
It wasn’t long though before they regained possession and Dan Griffin went on a storming run to score under the posts allowing Harry Bentley a simple conversion to take the lead.
A scrappy period of play followed with Stamford conceding two more penalties as Daventry proved they had a decent kicker as he converted them both to take the score to 9-7.
The home side, who well known for always producing a large pack of forwards, tried to up the pressure but could not break the purple, black and white line while Town, despite some individual runs, were unable to add a score before half-time.
The second half saw Stamford go up a gear and start to put the pressure on.
They varied the use of the ball by using the forwards to drive on while the backs then stretched the home defence out wide.
From one such move new full-back Ian Downer showed his pace to score in the corner.
It was all Stamford now and from a penalty skipper Robbie Smith tapped and ran before feeding Gaz Ramsden to crash through the tackles and score. Bentley added the extra points to move the score on to 9-19.
It wasn’t long before a long kick out of defence was followed up by O’Shea to score and this time it counted as the fourth try gained the bonus point.
Daventry started to lose their composure as kick-offs went straight out of play and passes were being dropped and Town players were always on hand to clear the ball up.
Kristian Naylor, on as a replacement, put in some hard yards and when illegally stopped Bentley landed the penalty.
Stamford continued to control the game and, when another Daventry attack failed, they stole the ball and ran out of defence before kicking long for three players to chase which resulted in a first try for flanker Lewis Nettleton under the posts.
Bentley’s conversion made the final score 9-34 which will give confidence to the side to take into the league encounters throughout the season.