League leaders Oundle put Leighton Buzzard to the sword
The difference between the top and bottom of the Midlands 1 East table were on show when Leighton Buzzard were thrashed 53-8 by leaders Oundle.
Despite the gulf in form, Leighton took the lead early on. From an attacking line-out Mike Lynch and Jacob Murtagh successfully undertook a well-worked move to allow Murtagh to score in the corner. The difficult conversion was missed to leave Buzzards 5-0 ahead after just six minutes.
Oundle bounced back with two tries in the next 15 minutes though, first when their big pack drove over and then the backs put together a fine move from inside their half, moving 14-5 ahead.
Buzzards were still competitive with breaks by captain Jack Whitehouse giving encouragement. Leighton were hampered by an injury to scrum-half, Graham Magill, causing a reorganisation after half-an-hour but they cut the lead to 14-8 with an Ollie Taylor penalty after 33 minutes.
Late in the half Buzzards had the opportunity to kick the ball dead for half-time. Perhaps unaware that it was the last play of the half, they attempted expansive rugby from deep in their half. With the ball turned over, Oundle scored again to leave the half-time score 19-8.
It took Oundle just three second half minutes to add to their tally with another fine try following slick handling in the backs. The conversion plus a penalty five minutes later made the score 29-8.
Gradually the big Oundle pack was exerting increased control - three tries in six second half minutes came from good ball retention and relentless pressure took the score to 48-8.
Playing only for pride, the Buzzards played some of their best rugby, retaining the ball through phases without ever seriously threatening the Oundle line.
Unfortunately, despite this increased effort, Oundle scored their eighth try with the final play of the game to leave the score 53-8.
Next week Buzzards play away at Biggleswade in the Beds Cup.