Salisbury II v Blandford
Blandford Continue to Pile on
Following from Blandford's demolition of Oakmedians the
previous week, Blandford travelled to fourth placed Salisbury 2nds. The two
sides met previously in October at Larksmead, where Blandford were very lucky
to come away with a victory against a well drilled young Salisbury side. With
an eye on continuity changes to the starting XV from the previous week were
limited to necessity.
The absence of number 8 James Burry and lock
Chris Kerley meant a reshuffle of the Blandford pack, with Marc Ricketts
shifting to 8 and Tom Richings and Stuart Bright filling the second row
jerseys. In the backline fullback Tom House was welcomed back following an
From the off Salisbury made their intentions clear,
kicking intelligently for field position, pressuring a faltering Blandford
lineout and gaining the upper had in a ferocious battle at the breakdown. A
nervous ten minutes ensued, with only the cultured boot of George Drake keeping
Blandford out of trouble. As the pressure built on the away side, the
temptation to pressure the Salisbury 10 bubbled over, and a rather cynical late
hit resulted in Salisbury setting up camp 10 metres from the Blandford line.
From the resulting lineout a well worked maul was set up and Salisbury barged
over to the right of the uprights. The conversion was unsuccessful.
try was the wake up the Blandford pack required, and Blandford finally started
to gain some prolonged possession in the Salisbury half. With the rampaging
stand in number 8 Marc Ricketts launching off an impressive Blandford scrum
several phases of play were linked together resulting in Drake stepping through
for Blandford's first try.
From this point Blandford never looked back
and really started to move the ball. Tries followed from Marc Ricketts, Angus
Hogg (x2), Tom Richings, Sam Percy and a final try from Drake. Five of the
tries were converted. Performances of note included Marc Ricketts; back to his
destructive best and inside centre Ryan Boardwell, however man of the match was
awarded to Drake, who gave real shape to the Blandford attack, ensuring rugby
was played in the correct areas keeping pressure on a very capable Salisbury