Banbury Bulls closed the gap on Old Centralians to three points following their 14-38 victory at Wimborne.
A brace of tries from Dan Brady and an inspired performance from Sam Carr-Archer helped secure Banbury’s fourth straight victory in Saturday’s penultimate Wadworth 6X South West One East fixture.
But Centralians remain in second spot following their narrow 24-17 success at Royal Wootton Bassett and occupy that play-off place ahead of Matt Goode’s side.
Bulls opened the scoring at Wimborne with a brilliant solo effort. Wimborne kicked deep but Brady returned in style, broke through the hosts’ line before side-stepping two more players to score under the posts and Ed Phillips converted.
The visitors soon doubled their advantage when Pete Boulton sucked in four Wimborne defenders with a rampaging run. Tommy Gray took advantage, burstingthrough a gap in the Wimborne line before weaving his way through the cover defence to score under the posts and Phillips added the extras.
Banbury’s third try was another spectacular one. Justin Parker broke down the right wing before off-loading to Ian Isham. The skipper kicked the ball infield where Phillips gathered before playing in Duncan Leese under the posts. Another simple conversion for Phillips put Bulls firmly in charge
Ryan Maidment got Wimborne back into the game when he intercepted a loose pass before running in untouched under the posts and Joel Mariner converted.
Brady scored his second try shortly after the restart after Joe Mills collected a high kick close to the halfway line and Leese did brilliantly to withstand a heavy counter ruck from Wimborne. Brady got the ball out and sneaked his way down the blind-side before running half the pitch to score and Phillips converted.
Wimborne reduced the deficit when Dylan Case took advantage of a mix-up in the Banbury defence to burst through the line and touch down under the posts. Mariner converted.
Bulls increased their lead when Tom Eyston stole a five metre line-out and a couple phases later Pete Boulton smashed his way through the Wimborne defence to score and Phillips added the extras.
With the clock winding down, Phillips kicked a penalty after Wimborne were penalised for a high tackle. Both teams had chances late on but could not add to their tally.
It was another good win for Bulls in a fixture between two evenly matched sides. But Bulls were more clinical when they had possession and defended really well they didn’t.