On Thursday night at Kingsey Road, Thame the Blues managed to gain a second consecutive victory, in a fairly ‘dour’ encounter with the Chinnor Falcons. Captain Fergus Taylor and coach James Wade took the opportunity to rest some key players but also to give opportunities for others to put their hand up for selection for Monday night’s mouth-watering encounter with Bristol Rugby at Iffley Road. The game was marred by handling errors and numerous penalties, which also saw three players sinned – one Oxford and two Chinnor – meaning the game never really got out of second gear and was not the spectacle the sizeable crowd had hoped for. It took 35 minutes before the opening score when the Oxford hooker Noah Miller (St Peter’s) was driven over from a well constructed catch and drive line-out, fly-half Basil Strang (St Stephen’s House) added the conversion. Half-time score 7 – 0 Oxford.
With both teams making a number of changes at the interval the flow of the game didn’t improve and the stop-start nature continued for most of the second period. It was not until the 75th minute when the patient crowd were rewarded with a second score, when a Chinnor forward in a ‘suspiciously’ looking offside position, pounced on a ball that squirted out of the back of a maul raced 20 metres before passing inside to a supporting player who fell over the line to score the try. The replacement fly-half was off target with his conversion attempt, leaving the score at 7 points to 5 in favour of Oxford.
The Blues now look forward to the visit of Bristol Rugby on Monday night for their first home match of the season, kick-off 7.15pm.
Team Kieran Ball, Noah Miller, Joseph Morris, Fergus Taylor, Jonathan Marsden, Ollie Adams, James Beaufils, Graeme MacGilchrist, Dylan McGagh, Basil Strang, Tom Stileman, Conor Kearns, Scott Fernquest, Ed David, Matt Geiger
Subs Edward Hart (on for Noah Miller), Paul Childs (on for Joseph Morris), Hugo Lu (on for Kieran Ball), Hugo McPherson (on for Fergus Taylor), John Aaron Henry (on for James Beaufils), Sebastian Haddock (on for Dylan McGagh), Tom Dyer (on for Basil Strang), Alex Hogg (on for Conor Kearns), Daniel Barley (on for Matt Geiger), Tom Hammond (on for Ed David), Angus Livingstone
ScoresT: Noah Miller (1) C: Basil Strang (1)