1st xv Match Reports 2015 - 2016

1st xv v Windsor 19th December 2015

LACKLUSTRE LEIGHTON LOSE THEIR WAY

LEIGHTON BUZZARD 16 – 22 WINDSOR

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Leighton Buzzard welcomed Windsor to Wrights Meadow for the game that marked the half way point of the season. Unfortunately Buzzard’s recent impressive form deserted them with their poorest performance of the season.

Leighton chose to play with the wind but up the slope in the first half, but suffered a setback in the first minute losing  flanker Tom Byard to a freak injury. Whilst the first exchanges were evenly matched, Buzzards were beginning to look the more dangerous but it took twenty minutes for the home side to take a 3-0 lead through a Geoff Branwhite penalty. That was the last score until the final play of the half – Leighton under pressure missed the chance to clear to touch, allowing Windsor a final attack.  The visitors used the opportunity to work the ball back from the touch-line and after a number of phases crashed over. The try was unconverted but gave Windsor a 5-3 advantage at half-time.

If the visitors were slightly fortunate to be ahead at the break, they began the second half with renewed confidence. Straight from the kick off a strong break was made and a quick interchange of passes allowed their left winger – who was dangerous throughout – to score under the posts. With the conversion, the score was 3-12.

Shortly after Windsor scored their third try- unconverted but the last minute of the first half and the first 10 of the second half had changed the game. Although a long-range, Geoff Branwhite penalty, had added 3 points for the Buzzards, Windsor were in charge at 6-19.

It took a fine individual try to bring a glimmer of hope to the home team. Tapping a quick penalty on half-way the ball was spread wide to Darren Braybrook on the right wing – beating the initial defence, he then chipped ahead to collect his own kick to score. With Branwhite’s conversion Buzzards were within 6 points at 13-19 and with almost 20 minutes left.

Unfortunately Windsor almost immediately extended their lead to 9 points  (13-22) with a penalty that left Buzzards needing two scores to win in the last 19 minutes. At last Leighton were beginning to show some urgency – whilst the pack weakened by injuries were having difficulties securing their own ball – a couple of breaks threatened the Windsor line.

With four minutes remaining Buzzards were awarded a penalty 30 metres from the posts. Knowing that a successful kick would move the score close enough for a losing bonus point,  the attempt was taken and with Geoff Branwhite’s kick successful the score was 16-22.

The last few minutes were played at a frantic pace with neither side able to take their opportunities leaving the final score 16-22.

Having now played every side in the league Buzzards record of 7 wins and 6 defeats leaves them in 7th place. After the Christmas break Leighton’s next match is at home versus Reading on January 2nd.

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