Rugby Union
OLs fail to stop the leaders

By Jamie Arrowsmith 24/04 Updated: 24/04 16:28

Buy photos » Greg Loydall sets up an attack for OLs 3rds on Saturday. Picture by Ray Todd.

Barkers Butts 48 Old Laurentians 15

Midlands Two West (South)

TOP of the table Barkers Butts demolished any remaining hope OLs had of featuring in the end of season promotion play-off with an overwhelming victory at Pickford Grange Lane on Saturday.

The hosts, who are on the verge of securing the league title, more than avenged their defeat against OLs earlier in the season in a game that saw the visitors fail to secure a bonus point for just the third time this season.

Injury and non-availability meant OLs were struggling to field a fit three-quarter line and the combination that took to the field included two making their first starts in the team this season and four who now qualify for veteran status.

A fleet-footed and skilful Barkers back line exposed OLs' lack of pace straight from the start from quick hands put full back Knox over for a try with less than 30 seconds on the clock, Tilsey added the conversion.

With fly half Stokes and his centres revelling in the space created by quick ball from all phases, Barkers had their fourth try and the bonus point secured by half time, taking a lead of 26-0 into the break.

The second half started as the first, Stokes wafting through several attempted tackles to go over after less than a minute, the conversion making it 33-0.

But, having grappled back into the game in the latter stages of the first half, OLs fought back to add three second half tries of their own.

The first came after five minutes when Jon Bean worked a wide blindside and Jody Roderick went over in the corner before Dom Hammond took a quick penalty 20m out and Stuart Eborall finished a drive for the line with a try.

Barkers struck back with two more tries, one following a long break from his own line by Stokes.

OLs came close on two occasions when Simon Bayliss first put a foot in touch then was held up over the line, Ben Anderson proving prominent in the build-up both times.

But OLs' perseverance paid off when Denzil Evans and Iain Wallis combined beautifully in midfield to carve an opening that led to James Orbinson putting Bean over for a try after 30 minutes.

After the referee had awarded a scrum near halfway, unnecessary OLs' back chat saw it changed to a penalty and Barkers started a move which led to their final try, centre McPhilimie going over for his third of the match.

THERE was better news for the 2nds who won 43-19 at Silhillians 2nds to move to the top of Warwickshire One.

Following an even first half which saw the scores locked at 12-12, OLs dominated the second half to run out comfortable winners.

Recent arrival Matt Cockman opened his account with two tries, matched by the ever improving Jack Boulden. Further tries were added by Paul Lewis, Charlie Harness and Ben Roberts, who also kicked four conversions.

THE 3rds were also victorious, overcoming Harbury 2nds 42-8 in Warwickshire Three.

Harbury started the stronger and dominated territory and possession for the first 15 minutes but once OLs did manage to get hold of the ball it became a different story.

A mixture of youth and experience saw OLs display some great open, running rugby and the backs scythed through Harbury's defence, almost at will.

The youngsters put in some great performances, which bodes well for the club's future as they ran in six tries to secure a 42-8 victory.

Fly half Greg Loydall led the way with two tries and all six conversion attempts with further tries by Rob Hughes, Ben Pelling, Tom Barton and Mark Eagles.

Buy photos» Mark Eagles races to the try line against Harbury 2nds. Picture by Ray Todd.

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