Sat 27 Jan 2018, 14:15

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Southam 2nd XV 17 – Old Laurentian 2nd XV 25

Report by David Middleton

On another miserable afternoon OLs made the trip to Southam and found themselves playing on a pitch that was agricultural at best and which certainly made the final score closer than perhaps it might have been.

OLs gave debuts to their two new South African recruits who were took a little time to adjust to the conditions, having last played in the 35 degree heat of their homeland.

OLs started brightly and soon found themselves 10-0 ahead as the pack laid the foundations for their half backs to release that old warrior Ben Shepherd who powered through the home defence twice in quick succession to register his sides first two scores of the game, both conversions missing as the conditions under foot made it almost impossible for the kickers.

OLs then seemed to go to sleep and the pacey Southam backs took full advantage, capitalising on some sloppy play to score two tries, one of which was converted to haul themselves into a narrow lead.

With half time approaching the forwards set up another good position and this time the ball was worked to Tom Steatham on the wing who duly touched down in the corner and with the conversion once again falling short, OLs held the advantage at the break 15-12.

The second half had a similar pattern to the first with both sides looking to try and play open rugby but the conditions were dictating and the scoreboard remained unchanged.

It was however OLs who crossed the line next as Steatham grabbed his second of the afternoon before Paul Lewis rounded off the scoring, scrambling over in the corner.

Southam scored the final points of the game at the death when their lively replacement flanker outpaced the covering OL’s defence.

This was an entertaining game played in difficult conditions which made the result that little bit sweeter. The OLs pack were dominant in the set piece where Fish and Chippy along with Chambers formed a solid front row and the return of Harris, O'Riordan and Lewis bolstered the back five; and the line out was a good source of possession where Jones had rediscovered his ability to catch aided by Chambers pin point accuracy.

OLs travel to Stratford this week, which is always a stern test so will need to take all this week’s positives into this fixture.

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