1st xv match reports 2023-2024All Match ReportsClub News






Leighton Buzzard probably gave their best display of the season away at Marlow in their latest Regional 2 Thames league fixture. Buoyed by the return of experienced players Jack Whitehouse, Ben Beaumont and Ashley Walsh, Buzzards played with determination and commitment, but ultimately fell short against a strong Marlow team.


Buzzards started well, and in the first couple of minutes, Ben Beaumont stretched the home defence with a kick and chase following a quickly-taken penalty. Despite this early attack, the first fifteen minutes were spent mostly in Buzzard territory, but Leighton were competitive and solid in defence, with the centre pairing of Jacob Dove and debutant Jarrod Dale to the fore.


Marlow took the lead after eighteen minutes from a penalty. Buzzards felt aggrieved as the referee had missed a clear knock-on immediately prior to the penalty decision. Leighton’s understandable frustration was unwisely expressed which led to the penalty being moved ten metres nearer to the posts. Shortly afterwards, Ollie Taylor kicked a penalty to level the score at 3-3.


As the half progressed, the influence of the large Marlow pack increased. They muscled over for their first try after twenty-five minutes and seven minutes later their no.8, broke from a scrum to add a second. With both tries converted, Marlow led



Leighton started the second half with fourteen men as Jack Whitehouse had, rather unluckily, been shown a yellow card for a high tackle at the end of the first half. Within two minutes of the re-start they fell further behind to trail 22-3.  Once again it was the impressive Marlow no.8 who made the break offloading for the home sides’ right winger to score in the corner.


Shortly after the try, Buzzards suffered a further set-back as a recurrence of an old injury forced Ben Beaumont to leave the field leaving Leighton down to thirteen men for a short period. However, this setback galvanized the spirit and determination of the Buzzard team and, for a period of fifteen minutes, camped in the Marlow twenty-two. Firstly, Jack Kempster, playing briefly at fly-half whilst Jack Whitehouse was off the field, made a fine break and went close to scoring. Following this most of the pressure on the Marlow line was from the Buzzard forwards, with eighteen-year-old Liam Beer particularly prominent. Despite the intense pressure, the Marlow defence held out, even after they were reduced to fourteen men following another high tackle decision.  Midway through the half, captain Owen Forsythe did cross the try line but was adjudged to have knocked-on.


Finally, after twenty-three minutes of the half, the siege of the Marlow twenty-two was broken. There seemed a certain inevitably that the home side would score shortly afterwards, which they did with a fine move in the backs. The successful conversion made the score 29-3.


The remaining minutes were played competitively in midfield with neither side able to add to the score.


Next week Buzzards welcome Belsize Park to Wright’s Meadow.