Weston hit back to sink Harlequins
Oxford Harlequins 19 pts Weston s Mare 35 pts - IT WAS a surreal afternoon at a grey and overcast North Hinksey as Weston continued their move from the nether regions of the league with this fourth win in a row.
Oxford Harlequins 19 pts
Weston s Mare 35 pts
IT WAS a surreal afternoon at a grey and overcast North Hinksey as Weston continued their move from the nether regions of the league with this fourth win in a row, three of which have been on the road.
The Harlequins have always tried to play open flowing high speed rugby, reflecting the number of students that tend to arrive every season, and this had certainly worked on a sunny day back in September by the seaside when they had won handsomely, and for 20 minutes it looked as though they were going to complete a rare double.
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They were a try up after only four minutes when right wing Nutt went in on the overlap in the corner, splendidly converted by Stewart and the same player escaped five minutes later for his second try.
Weston fought back five minutes later when their forwards punched up the middle and created swift possession for the backs to put centre Reid in for a touchdown which Dickson improved.
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The comeback was short lived as Maley ran untouched through the middle from 50 yards for an excellent individual third home try which Stewart improved and it hardly seemed to matter when the Oxford fly-half missed a penalty sitter from in front of the posts. At 19-7, the home crowd were already chortling about bonus points as half time approached.
It wasn't to be as the visitors went on to score 28 unanswered points. Dickson kicked a penalty for the visitors on 39 minutes. Weston attacked again and with the last move of the half, centre Mackay broke through for a try near the posts which was again converted, making it 19-17 and a totally different complexion to the game.
The second half was all about Weston as the forwards took charge and the midfield defence tightened up considerably. Oxfords' scrum wilted visibly. Their front row couldn't compete. Their possession dried up and mistakes and infringements abounded under fierce pressure.
Dickson made them pay for these indiscretions with five penalties, including a couple of monsters from over 50 metres, and completed a personal 25 point haul of immaculate goal kicking with a well struck drop goal on the final whistle.
Oxford had threatened the Weston line only once during the second half.
Weston team: Burns, (Saunders (blood), Middlemiss, Reid, Mackay, Sprague (Arnold), Dickson, Conway, Price, Burge, Williams, Glen, Richards, Smith,
Wright, Sparks (c).
GLENN Dickson's drop goal at Oxford Harlequins last Saturday was the first such score by a Weston player since Jason Dick's at Reading Abbey on October 29, 2005.
Dick, also a New Zealander, spent the first half of the 2005/6 season with the Seasiders, scoring 204 points in 13 matches at an average of 15.69.
Dickson is currently averaging 14.2 in his first five matches.
WESTON lock Andrew Glen who was sidelined with back problems for almost three seasons, has battled back this term to complete 150 senior appearances after spinal surgery.
Weston-born Glen, who will celebrate his 29th birthday this week, started his club career in the club's Under-7 mini squad in 1987 and progressed through the age groups before making his first team debut at Torquay in April 1999.
Glen, who was educated at Worle School and Bridgwater College, has scored two tries this season, bringing his career total to 13.
Weston Utd 22 pts
Bristol Barbarians 25 pts
WESTON United ended up losing a game they really should have won, as their young team enthusiastically coached by ex-England ladies player Susie Appleby managed to hold off a second half rally by Weston.
Barbarians took the lead when their scrum half outpaced the defence to go over for a converted try.
Weston then missed a penalty before full-back Ben Main put up a towering up and under which was eventually gathered by lock Simon Hudson, who held off the covering defenders to score an unconverted try. Weston should have taken the lead when centre Chris Young made a break through the midfield, but a mis-placed pass ended a promising move.
The visitors took advantage of this situation and scored a great try using pace and width to put their left wing over for another converted try.
A quick tap by young colt scrum-half Ollie Trott ended up with a penalty scored by left wing Jonno Rees, but Barbarians increased their lead when their No 8 crashed over to give them a comfortable lead, but this was reduced just before half time when a chip by fly-half James Biddle was gathered by Young who put fellow centre Jon Filer away for a fine try, converted by Rees.
With Weston only four points behind it looked as though they would push on in the second half, but a penalty to the visitors gave them a seven point lead which was negated when young No 8 Ned Barker picked up from the back of a scrum to power over for a try, which when converted by Rees levelled the scores.
It was Barbarians however, who had the last laugh when Weston infringed once too often and kicked what proved to be the winning points.
One shining light for Weston was Trott, who on his second team debut was comfortably the home side's best player on the day.