OTLIENSIANS 1st XV 11 pts v BRAMLEY PHOENIX
1st XV 6 pts
Photo Jan Pickles
On a grey, damp and overcast day at Chaffers
Field, the gloom was illuminated enough by one piece of excellent play, that
saw Otliensians gain another league victory to see them through the first
half of the season in a very healthy position.
It seemed that Bramley Phoenix had well and truly risen to the challenge, as
they began strongly with a series of well constructed and dangerous back
moves, but as is becoming increasingly the case, once they had realised the
strength of the home defensive system the game became a dour spoiling
affair, with many interruptions, the highlight been the debating skills of
the Bramley skipper, who slowed the game very effectively with his myriad of
questioning techniques of every decision.
It was Bramley who had the best of the first half, using the conditions to
good effect, with their lively backs using the ball at every opportunity,
but as the ball from their forwards dried up, their potency was nullified,
and the clear superiority of the Otliensians pack became the telling factor.
Otliensians were winning the ball at will in the line out, where Bramley did
not contest on the home ball, and the scrummage was dominant, with several
strikes against the head, but still the clawing mud left no easy escape, and
at half time Bramley had converted two penalties to lead 6 - 0.
It was not however long before Otliensians began to show their touches of
flair, with the ball moving freely in well executed patterns, and from a
series of forward drives, the Woods brothers combined, with Tom delivering
the final pass for Jon to score wide to the right of the posts, and lighten
the supporters day.
As the gloom became heavier, it was Foster who stepped up to the mark with
two well struck penalties to ease Otliensians away to their hard won
victory, against tenacious local opponents, who also seemed delighted with
It is on days like this that teams are potentially made, with hard earned
league points the ultimate goal, and again Otliensians were not found
wanting, but their loyal fans are looking forward to an equally successful
second half of the season, beginning next week with the difficult trip to
Bramley Phoenix 10pts v Old Otliensians 2nd XV 28pts
Otliensians expected a tough encounter at
Bramley in this Merit table game but set off really well building on
promising performances OF recent weeks.
After 5 mins Skipper Andy Bower, this week playing in the second row rather
than his more normal centre berth, broke from halfway . Brett Tenniswood in
the unaccustomed scrum half berth was up in support and scored for Ben
Newall to convert. Otliensians continued to work well in both the backs and
forwards and after 30 mins good interplay saw Bower break through a tackle
on halfway , round the full back to score, Newall converting giving the
Ensians a 0 -14 pts lead at the break.
With the wind at their backs in the second half Bramley came more into the
game. A good midfield move broke through the Ensians defence after 5 mins
and the home side scored. They continued to put the visitors under pressure
but Ensians defended well and midway through the half, wing Jason Babb
chipped the ball through from his own 22, caught it ,sped down the field and
fed fullback Darren Cooley who scored, Newall converting from near the
touchline. Bramley were far from finished and hit back with a good try from
their open side flanker in the corner.
Otliensians picked up their attacking game and after a series of forward
drives prop Tom Twist went over for Newall to convert once again.
In what was probably the best 2nd XV performance of the season so far , Ben
Smith and Joe Robinson won good line out ball, brother Ben Robinson made a
welcome return to the centre, Tenniswood deputised creditably at scrumhalf
and Bower did a great job captaining the side from second row.
Otliensians 3rd XV 17 pts versus
Leodiensians 4th XV 7 pts
Photo Jan Pickles
Moortown gave back word early in the week and
Leodiensains were happy to travel to Otley for what was anticipated to be a
close game .Otliensians 3rd XV were augmented with some older experienced
players in Dave Smith, Peter Gillson, Roger Whitworth and Chris Myers and
they were soon prominent in coordinating the play in the early attacks from
the home side. Alan Garnett began to win some good ball in the lineout and
Otliensians strung together some good passing moves and just failed to score
in the corner. However on 15 mins Mark Copping went over for a try from
close range which stand off Will Haines converted. Leodiensians began to
work hard in the pack and moved towards the Ensians line but kept losing
field position via a series of penalties. When the need arose Otliensians
defended resolutely and at halftime had a well deserved 7 - 0 pts lead.
Leos regrouped at the break and were first on the attack with a good break
from their inside centre who accelerated through from 30m to score near the
posts. The try was converted but this encouraged the Ensians to build up
some momentum. Michael Philpott came on as replacement centre. Haines who
was showing some nice touches put the home side back into the lead with a
penalty after 12 mins. The visitors seemed to wilt visibly although their
try scoring centre always posed a threat when he had the ball. Scott Child
left the field injured for a period and Phil Cook came on at prop. Late in
the game he provided the continuity in another good Ensians attack for
fullback Sean Flesher to score, Haines converted.
A good win for the 3rd XV which should provide them with encouragement
before the trip to Castleford.
On Saturday the 1st XV travel to Castleford for a key League game. The
3rd XV are also at Csstleford whilst the 2nd XV play Castleford at Chaffers
Fields in a Merit table game.