The Blues 2014 Varsity campaign got well and truly under way under on a sunny Saturday afternoon when they produced a solid first performance to defeat a spirited Saint Petersburg State University team 83 point to 3. With five players new to OURFC and a further three making their Blues debuts, it was something of a step into the unknown for Head Coach James Wade and Captain Jacob Taylor but they were very pleased with the overall performance as they now look forward to what will be a much tougher test in Moscow next Saturday against RC Slava. The first half saw the Blues play some bright enterprising rugby but they were a little off with their execution on occasions, only to be expected after the squad have only been together for two weeks. Young 18 year off Fresher Matt Geiger (St Catherine’s) couldn’t have got his OURFC career off to a better start when he crossed for the game’s first try following a strong charge off a line-out from second row Fergus Taylor (Regent’s Park), full back Ed Doe (Kellogg) adding the conversion. Just four minutes later Taylor, also making his debut, crashed over from short range for an unconverted try. Zandy Macdonald (St Peter’s), captaining the side from inside centre, was next to score as the tries continued at regular intervals, with Doe once again adding the extras. The Blues forwards were enjoying dominance at the set piece, which allowed Kit Goodfellow (Keble), at fly-half to control the game and release the backs with time and space to exploit the plentiful supply of possession. Tom Reeson Price crossed next for a converted try (Doe) before wing Will Boardman (New), who was named Man of the Match by the Russian coach scored a brace of tries, one of which was converted to make the score at half time 38 points to nil in favour of the Blues. The second half saw more of the same as the Oxford players superior fitness and skill shone through as they added a further seven tries, five of which Doe converted. No 8 Will Thomas (Somerville) making his debut for the Blues having previously played for the U21’s scored one, Reeson Price added a second to his first half score, replacements Lewis Anderson (Trinity), Guy Western (Pembroke) and George Cullen (Kellogg) all picked up one each whilst Doe took his personal points tally 28 to with two well taken tries of his own. Saint Petersburg did manage to get on the scoreboard with a penalty from their fly-half to make the final score 83 point to 3 and secure OURFC’s first win on Russian soil. All thoughts now transfer to Moscow where RC Slava await, in a match to help celebrate their 40th Anniversary, the Blues will need to up their performance but the whole squad are looking forward to testing themselves against one of the strongest Russian club sides. Kick-off is 4pm on Saturday 20th September.