History was made at Occupation Road this afternoon (February 17) as Oundle picked up their first ever English Clubs Championship win against big rivals Borough.
And they didn’t just win the Midlands Division One East clash, they hammered the visitors 40-14.
Borough head coach Lee Adamson missed the match after an accident with a pane of glass and he was undergoing hospital treatment. And that, I’m sure, was less painful than watching his under-performing side would have been.
Borough just weren’t at the races today. They’ve been stuttering for a while now - this was in fact their fourth defeat on the run - and they were no match for an Oundle side buoyed up by their coach Jon Phillips, an ex-Borough stalwart.
Man for man Oundle were better. They were sharper, they were stronger, they were more organised and they were up for it.
Borough started well enough with recalled Army man Ben Edwards prominent in the early stages and they finished with a bit of spirit as well.
But the hour in between belonged to Oundle.
Will Carrington, ex-Borough and, like so many of the Oundle team, ex-Peterborough Lions as well, slotted a penalty in the first minute and on 20 minutes Oundle deservedly went 10-0 up when second row Simon Andrews crashed over after good work at a lineout by the impressive Simon New. Carrington converted.
Borough came back into it, against the run of play, with a solo score by experienced centre Reggie Reid, converted by debutant fly-half James West.
But by half-time Oundle had forged 18-7 ahead as Toby Snelling crashed over for a try and Carrington kicked a penalty.
The next 30 minutes saw Oundle, growing in confidence by the minute, dominate all areas of play. They had the upperhand at the set pieces and attacked with flair on the outside.
Flying winger James Keane went over in the corner to make it 23-7 and then when Borough were reduced to 13 men following the sin-binning of Nick Burkett and Tom Williams, Oundle snatched another try. This time it was prop Richard Jones who got the touchdown after smart play at a lineout by Jack Sharpley. Carrington’s conversion made it 30-7.
Borough number eight Sarel Pretorius, much, much quieter than usual, popped up to score a second try for Borough after a lovely burst by Borough’s best player Michael Bean and West’s conversion made it 30-14.
But in the closing stages Oundle were back on the front foot and further tries were added by Robb Shingles and New. Shingles’ score came after some forceful running by Toby Snelling and Craig Tandy.
Borough have dropped to sixth in the table, one place and 10 points ahead of Oundle.
Oundle: Lewis Robinson, Gabriel Smithson, Will Carrington, Toby Snelling, James Keane, Craig Tandy, Harry Winch, Saad Sait, Joe Roberts, Richard Jones, Simon Andrews, Jack Sharpley, Grant Snelling, Simon New, Robb Shingles. Subs: Oliver Frisby, Luke Sharpley, Nicholas Bates.
Borough: Rob Jacobs, Jonno Anderson, Tom Williams, Michael Bean, Mooki Tshepo-Olebile, James West, Nick Burkett, Stuart Day, Sam Cowell, Ben Edwards, John Thompson, Rob Linnell, Rob Moulds, Sarel Pretorius, Luke Swindells. Subs: Reggie Reid, Nico Steenkamp, Todd Crooks,