Buckingham were unable to build on their stunning win over Maidenhead at the weekend as their hopes of survival suffered a severe setback with a 24-20 defeat against fellow strugglers Marlow.
In a tense affair, the forwards continued to provide a good platform but the backs were strangely out of sorts as Marlow stormed into a 24-6 lead before holding off a late Buckingham fightback.
The visitors had started strongly with Andrew White intercepting a loose pass and nearly making it to the home line before the same player put Buckingham in front with a penalty.
Marlow’s riposte was almost immediate, however, as a penalty to the corner, a lineout, a winning scrum followed by a quickly taken free kick, enabled their rangy number 10 to dot down a converted try.
Worse was to follow as scrum half Will Kiddle was stretchered off with ankle damage, and though Buckingham’s pack continued to make inroads, it was Marlow who scored again with the conversion extending their lead to 14-3.
Once again Buckingham worked their way upfield and White kicked his second penalty, but their woes persisted when Marlow finished what was a 53-minute half with a penalty and a comfortable 17-6 half-time lead.
With a strengthening wind at their backs, Buckingham’s hopes of using this advantage were short-lived as Rob Laird departed with an ankle injury and Amos received a second yellow. Marlow were quick to capitalise on the visitors’ misfortune with another converted try.
Trailing by 18 points, Buckingham produced a late rally with their forwards still giving the home eight a torrid time and were finally rewarded when another driving maul resulted in a try for Phil Wright and the conversion by White.
Back came Buckingham with a yellow card for Marlow and a second try for Wright, before White’s conversion set up a tense finish.
Marlow held on for the final minutes, though, to record a victory that keeps Buckingham in the bottom three in South West One East.