08:00AM, Friday 11 January 2019
Windsor RFC comfortably beat rivals Reading 29-11 on Saturday without ever fully hitting their straps at Home Park.
The win maintains the side’s six-point gap over closest challengers Buckingham in Southern Counties North, ahead of another home test on Saturday, this time against in-form Bicester.
Third placed Bicester are on something of a roll. They edged out Aylesbury 24-23 away on Saturday for their eighth win in the league on the spin. A disastrous start to the campaign which saw them lose their first four games has left Bicester playing catch up.
Head coach Anthony Andrews was a little disappointed by Saturday’s display against Reading, but they still managed to pick up a bonus-point win.
Christopher Emmett went over to get the ball rolling in the sixth minute. Jack Bingham touched down their second try before tries from Allen Crawshaw and Stuart Koutsouris completed a routine home win. Jack Gaylor kicked three conversions and a penalty for the hosts.
“There’s definitely room for improvement and I wouldn’t say everything is perfect at the moment,” said Andrews. “But our performances have put us in a pretty good position. If we keep doing what we’re doing hopefully we can stay where we are come April.
“On Saturday we played well in parts and not so well in parts. We won the game but weren’t overly happy with the performance and talked afterwards about how we let ourselves down in parts. But it shows the strides we’ve made that we can win a game and pick up five points and still be a little disappointed.”
Bicester are the league’s form side and are sure to present a real test of Windsor’s title credentials on Saturday. Andrews knows it could be a defining day in Windsor’s season.
“We’re at home and that will give us a boost,” he said. “Because of the changes to the team through injury and unavailability every week is a real challenge. They’ve won eight games on the bounce and will come to us with real confidence, so we’re anticipating a tough game. But if we select the right combinations hopefully we can get the win and maintain the breathing space we have at the top.”
Marlow RFC kicked off the New Year with a restorative 34-23 win at Reading Abbey on Saturday. Rory Greenslade-Jones' men are sixth ahead of Saturday’s home game against Slough at Riverwoods.
In contrast the Greenies have been struggling of late and handed Littlemore their first victory of the season on Saturday, losing 30-25 at Tamblyn Fields. Slough picked up one of their three league wins this season in the 26-19 victory over Marlow earlier this season.
In the BB&O Premier Division, Drifters were thumped 41-10 by mid-table Tadley.
They’re home to Wheatley on Saturday.
In the BB&O Championship fifth-placed Phoenix get back to league action after their extended break at home to Winslow on Saturday.
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The statue, which was put up on a plinth in the High Street in November 2018 to commemorate 100 years since the First World War, was damaged beyond repair and has not been replaced.