Aylestone Athletic 22 Stamford College OB 24
Stamford College Old Boys kick-started their season with a crucial bonus point in an away win at Aylestone Athletic.
Four tries earned the win on a ground the Old Boys had failed to win at in a long while.
College have struggled in recent weeks with mounting injuries and results had started to reflect this.
Still with nine first team players injured, College nonetheless took a strong squad to this game determined to put recent setbacks behind them.
College started the stronger team with large amounts of possession and territory but failed to turn this into points.
Rampaging runs from Williams, Pattison and Jones ripped into Aylestone, creating space and numbers out wide and a delicately weighted pass from lock Skevington saw prop Walker, lurking on the wing, over in the corner.
College’s performance fluctuated dramatically throughout the game and periods of poor play were in stark contrast to spells of excellence.
One of these fazes of brilliant play resulted in College’s next score.
Delicate interplay and offloads from the back line saw College dance into the Aylestone 22, where fast ball allowed Williams time and space to exploit a large hole in the defensive line and gallop over to score.
After adding the second score, College were 10-0 up, but sloppy play let Aylestone back to 10-8 at the break.
Duncan’s introduction at the break and a rallying talk at half-time saw College come out and play with an intensity and tempo that any team would struggle to cope with.
Rucking led by Duncan produced a ball for the backs in space and Williams was on the end of a well-executed passing move for his second of the day.
College’s lead was cut during another poor spell, but they scored again after another break from the centres.
Jones, in space in broken play, passed to the ever-present Williams in space and he drew his man before sending Denechau through to score, making it 24-15.
Aylestone made the most of another lapse to make it tight at 22-24, but College kept the ball close in the final stages of the game and held out to take the win.