BUZZARDS FIRST HALF POWERPLAY DESTROYS UNPREPARED SCOUTS
LEIGHTON BUZZARD 62 – 5 NORTHAMPTON OLD SCOUTS
Leighton Buzzard started the New Year with their best performance of the season with a ten try rout of Northampton Old Scouts. The home pack was rampant throughout, continually threatening with their driving play, as well as dominating in the lineout.
Playing downhill in the first half, the initial exchanges were evenly contested, although Buzzards missed a chance to take the lead after 10 minutes when Geoff Branwhite uncharacteristically pulled a straightforward penalty wide. However two minutes later an initial break by Ryan Fraser gave the pack the opportunity to drive Zak Tift over the line to open the scoring. Three minutes later an initial break on the left was spread wide for Darren Braybrook, making a welcome return from long term injury, to turn his opposite winger inside out to score in the corner. With Geoff Branwhite converting both tries, the Buzzards led 14-0.
Half way through the half, a break by Reece Harris-Smith was held up just short but from the resulting line out, the forwards drove over for hooker Greg Falcon to score. With Wills Messum dominating the lineout , the forwards repeated the move 7 minutes later, this time from fully 20 metres- and again Greg Falcon claimed the touchdown to give the Buzzards a 19- 0 lead.
With the forwards now dominating, good ball was won from an attacking scrum to give skipper Euan Irwin the opportunity to muscle his way through the defence to touch down after 32 minutes – a try converted by Branwhite. Three minutes later the forwards repeated the lineout and drive move for Zak Tift to score his second try. Keen to join in, the backs put together a length of the field move only for an Old Scout defender to tackle Ben Beaumont just as he was to receive the try scoring pass – the referee correctly awarded a penalty try which Geoff Branwhite converted, leaving the half time score an amazing 43-0.
The Old Scouts started the second half with increased vigour despite the impossibility of their position. However, 7 minutes into the half, Buzzards scored their eighth try. A well-judged up and under from fly-half Lee Walker was chased by Ben Beaumont and the resulting confusion allowed Geoff Branwhite to score unopposed under the posts – the extra points for the conversion brought up the fifty points.
Old Scouts continued to battle and, after a rare period of pressure, breached the Buzzard line to score their only try. Perhaps this was the spur Leighton needed as they upped the intensity and although Old Scouts defended with commitment, pressure finally told when Wills Messum scored in the corner with 6 minutes left. There remained time for the Buzzard backs to run one of their set moves putting full back Ben Beaumont almost clear – whilst held up short, the ball was recycled for Lee Walker to be the seventh Leighton player to cross for a try. Branwhite’s conversion left the final score 62-5.
With the two sides above them both winning, Buzzards remain twelfth and next week travel to second placed Old Northamptonians full of confidence.