Bulls in seventh heaven as they complete the double

Banbury Bulls completed their first double of the campaign and moved into the top five on the back of it.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 19th December 2016, 10:08 am
Updated Thursday, 29th December 2016, 2:18 pm
Banbury Bulls' Joe Mills gets away against Chippenham at Bodicote Park
Banbury Bulls' Joe Mills gets away against Chippenham at Bodicote Park

Bulls ended 2016 with a bonus point 43-22 victory in Saturday’s South West One East fixture against a physical Chippenham outfit.

Banbury’s seven-try success saw Josh Deegan and Matt Goode cross the line twice at Bodicote Park.

The game started brightly with Banbury’s first attack resulting in a penalty just inside the Chippenham 22 but Ed Phillips was off target. The next attack bore more fruit.

First-phase ball from the line-out was carried up by the impressive Cashel Chilvers. That allowed the backs room to work with and Matt Goode picked a line between two defenders, was too strong for them and went over, leaving Phillips with a simple conversion.

Bulls did not have to wait long to notch another score from another successful line-out and big carry from the pack. Ed Phillips tried to nip around the ruck, he was stopped but Michael Fox cleaned up and Chris Phillips scooped up the ball and evaded a couple of defenders to stretch out for the line.

Another successful kick by Ed Phillips gave Bulls 14-0 lead before Chippenham reduced the arrears with a penalty. Bulls replied when they stole a line-out, worked the phases in midfield and, after the platform was set, the ball was moved wide for Deegan to slip inside the cover defence to cross in the corner.

Before halftime Bulls gave away a penalty, which allowed Chippenham good field position for a line-out. The initial drive was stopped but the forwards worked around the fringe until they finally broke through to score.

Bulls started the second half strongly and fly-half Sam Stoop kicked the ball deep into Chippenham’s 22. An untidy line-out was lost by the visitors and cleaned up by skipper Ian Isham who powered his way over the line carrying a couple of defenders with him.

Phillips added the conversion and quickly added another. Going through phases to secure a better platform, Goode hit a hard line off Stoop on the edge of the Chippenham 22 to romp in under the posts.

Bulls capped their best period of the game with a try for Academy Colt Dan Brady on his debut.

Following a line-out on halfway, Chilvers carried the ball hard and deep into Chippenham territory. With the defence breached, Bulls quickly moved the ball to the left wing where Brady showed good feet to finish well in the corner.

Chippenham’s centre got a straight red card for violent play before the visitors gained field position and worked multiple phases to go around the ruck to score.

Banbury’s seventh try came from a scrum inside their own half. Going to the blind-side, a training ground move saw full-back Joe Mills kick ahead for Deegan to win the race for the line.

Chippenham scored again with the final play of the game but it came too late to alter the outcome.