Shipston-on-Stour entertain Old Yardleians looking to maintain their promotion push on this weekend.
A dominant second half display from the Rams saw them leap-frog Old Leamingtonians into second place in the Midlands Three West table on Saturday. Shipston overcame a 17-8 halftime deficit to pick up a vital 27-17 victory away at Old Leamingtonians and move into second place.
The home side were the first to get over the line for a converted try but Shipston fought back strongly and had a spell when they were really dominant, controlling possession and working their way down field. The first try from a well formed driving maul after winning a line-out eight metres out from the line. The pack got a shunt on and drove the home side over the line with Matt Corby at the tail of the drive to claim it.
A penalty from the returning Sam Cooper gave Shipston the lead but the hosts moved the ball sharply from the ruck and played with a good intensity that caused the Shipston defence issues. Their dominance was rewarded with a two tries to give them a 17-8 lead at the break.
Shipston had to sharpen up around the ruck and keep the ball in hand during the second half and that’s exactly what they did. They defended resolutely and with ball in hand they were clinical and played with real pace and intensity.
Tom Corby picked a gap through two forwards to exploit and barrelled his way over the covering fullback to touch down under the posts.
The Shipston forwards began to get on top and created an excellent platform from the set-piece for the back line to attack. They were rewarded with a third try from the overlapping Karl Slatter following some solid phases of possession.
Shipston scored their fourth try to secure the bonus point following more good work in the midfield. Corby was sent crashing through the middle and showed great strength to stay on his feet before the ball was recycled quickly at the ruck and found its way to Harry Jackson who beat a couple of defenders and raced away for the score.
Cooper’s conversion gave the Rams a 27-17 lead and Shipston repelled everything the hosts could throw at them to grind out a crucial result.