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Match Report. Doggies vs Kew Occasionals.

After a hard-fought win in their last outing against the Bristol Scarlets, OURFC’s Greyhounds XV arrived at Iffley road hoping to record back-to-back victories home and away. The prospect of a win became particularly tantalising upon realising that the Kew team they’d be facing included an array of former and current tabs, making the fixture an ideal test for the team so close to varsity. After Kew poached some fellow OURFC players on game day the pressure only intensified, as each man knew he was playing for a jersey. An inspirational talk from captain Ben Clarke, followed by a few hits on the tackle bag, had the hounds ready to put on a show.

The game began a tense affair, with each team exchanging crunching tackles and viscous collisions from the get-go. The hounds appeared to have the upper hand early in the game, keeping the majority of possession in good areas of the field, but not initially being able to find a finishing touch. Kew remained dangerous on the break, with looming threats in their 12 and winger positions, making the game entirely difficult to predict. There came some relief for the Greyhounds as Theo Saitch opened the scoring with a try in the corner promptly converted by Alex Burson to give the dogs a 7-0 lead. On from this, a lack of discipline around the offside line caused some nervy moments, however even in retreat the sometimes-over-eager defence of the greyhounds was resilient, keeping Kew scoreless. Going into the break, after some more well-worked tries, the Greyhounds lead 19-0, a scoreline that may have seemed generous at the time.

Generosity was not met with kindness, as Noah Miller wasted no time before intercepting the ball to dot down between the posts. Felix Palmer stepped up to take the subsequent conversion but couldn’t produce the goods. After having watched Ben Scher slot the game winner from the touchline the week before, Felix adopted an inverse approach, starting between the posts and managing to find touch. Thankfully the extra two wouldn’t be necessary, as the flood gates opened and the Greyhounds began to run riot. Another try from Noah Miller, along with a hattrick from Alex Burson, and scores from other including captain Ben Clarke secured a 60-0 win for the Greyhounds, their biggest this season. Standout performances include Alex Burson scoring virtually half of the teams points, Victor Angelov living up to the nickname ‘Quicktor’ with some lightning runs, and Jonty Scott-Brown who put in some enormous tackles off the bench sparing no one, not even fellow team-mates. The rugby didn’t end there as Kew were invited back to the Pav to view the Wales vs Scotland game before a night in Vinnies.

With Varsity being so close the Greyhound’s will be hoping to replicate this form against Cambridge on February 24th, but will first be faced with a challenging test from a touring Barbarian Suisse team this coming Saturday.

By Luke Newland

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