Promotion-chasing Towcester too good for lowly Buckingham

Action from Towcestrians versus Buckingham. Pictures by Jake McNulty
Action from Towcestrians versus Buckingham. Pictures by Jake McNulty

Towcestrians maintained their push for promotion in South West One East while Buckingham continue to toil following a one-sided encounter between the two local rivals at the weekend.

Relegation-threatened Buckingham made the short journey to face promotion-chasing Towcester still struggling to field a regular side with their lengthy injury list showing little sign of improving.

Craig Holton through James Hulston but is brought down by Jamie Lee and James Temple

Craig Holton through James Hulston but is brought down by Jamie Lee and James Temple

Tows made the worst possible start when skipper Liam Wilkinson was sin-binned only two minutes into the game, but his absence failed to prevent the hosts from going ahead when winger Pepe Nanci went on a storming run up the middle and touched down under the posts to leave himself with a straightforward conversion.

Towcester showed why they are flying high with a second try from Nanci before further good hands and support play took them even further ahead 10 minutes later as Buckingham were unable to cope with the speed and variation of their attacks, with Matt Yuill the try scorer this time.

Jak Cluness then came on for the injured James Hulston as Buckingham’s woes deepened before some good defence was undone with a Towcester turnover and Yuill crossed the line for the home side’s bonus-point fourth try.

Buckingham did manage to put together some attacking phases but the Tows defence stood firm with the away side’s best effort a narrow penalty miss by Calum Gillie on the stroke of half-time.

After the break, Buckingham upped their game while Towcester gave away a string of penalties, which led to the away side finally breaching the home defence. A long kick to the corner enabled the visitors to pick and drive and their well-controlled 20-metre surge saw Phil Wright cross.

An under-pressure Tows were now pinned inside their own half after giving away countless penalties and a second yellow card had the hosts in trouble with the Buckingham forwards dominant.

Another break by Harry Scarr, supported by Seth Williams, forced Tows onto the back foot and the resulting drive was held up at the expense of yet another penalty.

Gillie’s kick to touch kept Buckingham going forward and there was no respite for the home pack as Buckingham shunted them off their own ball in the home 22 and a neat pass from Scarr put Gillie into space for the second try with 70 minutes played.

Towcester swiftly replied, though, with Dougie Rattray crashing over for a fifth try before Yuill completed his hat-trick and he was followed over by Chrissie George, whose try sealed an 11th win from 12.

Towcestrians, who remain second, face a daunting task against unbeaten league leaders Chippenham this weekend, while second from bottom Buckingham entertain Trowbridge.