Bulls keep the pressure on top two with another victory

Banbury Bulls kept the pressure on the top two with a 14-19 victory at Sherborne.
Matt Goode saw Banbury Bulls grind out another victory at SherborneMatt Goode saw Banbury Bulls grind out another victory at Sherborne
Matt Goode saw Banbury Bulls grind out another victory at Sherborne

A Dan Brady try and 14 points off the boot of Ed Phillips helped Bulls to another success in Wadworth 6X South West One East.

Newly-promoted Sherborne had picked up an impressive seven wins ahead of Saturday’s fixture. Bulls made eight changes, Joel Thomas made his full debut after impressing off the bench last weekend and Dan Kirwin started at nine for the first time this season.

The opening 20 minutes were even with Bulls slightly shading possession and territory. The scrum was fiercely contested, having to be reset several times, with both sides working hard to gain an advantage.

Matt Shea was yellow-carded after conceding penalties and when Sherborne’s replacement scrum half kicked the ball out the back of a scrum Phillips stepped up to slot through the posts. Sherborne levelled after Bulls were penalised for crossing and Rhodri Hopkins was on target.

Dan Brady scored Banbury’s only try of the game when he crossed in the corner. Jack Briggs reacted to a quick high press from the Sherborne line by delicately chipping over the top and Brady simply had too much pace to beat his opponents to the ball and touch down out wide.

Phillips converted and then kicked another penalty in the opening minutes of the second half to extend Banbury’s lead after Sherborne were penalised for hands in the ruck.

Tom Macdonald was yellow-carded after coming in at the side of a ruck a couple metres from his own try line. Sherborne took full advantage of the extra man with a try in the corner.

Good work from Henry Hodgson saw Sherborne break down the right flank before he off-loaded inside to Owen Williams for the score in the corner.

Bulls increased their lead with a huge penalty kick from Phillips. Doug Backhouse was taken out in the air while being lifted for a line-out and Phillips was on target from long range. 8-16.

Sherborne reduced the deficit from the restart. Bulls were penalised being for being caught offside attempting to gather the ball at the restart and Rhodri Hopkins kicked the resulting penalty.

Toby O’Loughlin was yellow carded for Sherborne after kneeing Phillips in the head in an off the ball incident and he picked himself to kick the resulting penalty.

Bulls were penalised for being offside late on and Hopkins kicked the penalty. Sherborne pushed for a late score but Banbury’s defence pinned in their own half.