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RUGBY - Victory for Cambridge

To kick off the varsity series Cambridge Colleges XV played Oxford Colleges XV on a cold windy day at Grange Road on Friday the 29th of November.

With the squad full of confidence after beating the under 21A’s the week before, the Cambridge team started strongly, gaining good territory and following a penalty kick to the corner, captain Luke Thompson scored the first try of the day after a strong forward maul. Elliot Bath slotted the difficult conversion from out wide. 7 – 0 Cambridge.

Continued pressure from the home team saw them gain a penalty in front of the posts in which Bath converted with ease, 10 – 0 Cambridge. Cambridge started to dominate possession but the Oxford defence were starting to make things difficult for the home side and it didn’t help when Thompson dropped the ball over the line. Finally some slick hands from the backs put James Taylor away down the wing and some neat offloading from Taylor and Jeremy Cribb saw Thompson go over for his second. Bath added the extras, 17 – 0 Cambridge. The half ended on a bit of a downer as some poor kicking and weak tackling allowed the Oxford Fullback to break the line, and if it hadn’t been for some last ditch tackling, he would have scored. Unfortunately, quick recycle ball saw Oxford eventually score out wide, conversion missed.

HT Cambridge 17 – 5 Oxford

Cambridge spent the start of the second half in the Oxford 22 but couldn’t convert pressure into points, with Bath missing two penalties in front of the posts. The dominant home pack found themselves being penalised a lot at the scrum which saw the visitors tap and go on a few occasions, giving them front foot ball, but some strong defence from the light blues refused to allow Oxford to cross the white wash. Cambridge got hold of possession and started to work their way back up the pitch. The bench really started to make an impact now with Henry Somers, Oli Holmes, Stuart King and Tim Eyre crossing the gain line with some authority.

After some good phases of play, hard running and smooth hands allowed Ross Elsby to score in the corner, this time Bath did not miss, 24 – 5 Cambridge. Not long after the restart, a strong run down the right wing from Tim Eyre, in which he bounced off a few would be tacklers, set up the try of the game, finished by Elsby. This try saw the whole team gather in celebration and Bath succeeded with the conversion, 31 – 5 Cambridge. The last 10 minutes were played out by the home team and when the final whistle went a massive roar from the crowd marked the end of a superb Cambridge victory.

FT Cambridge 31 – 5 Oxford

Tries – Thompson (2), Elsby (2)
Conversions – Bath (4)
Penalties – Bath (1)