Early Tries Cost Wheatley
By Simon Chadbone
A controversial penalty try didn't help with Wheatley going down 26-3
Wheatley made a bright start to proceedings at Hinksey Lane yesterday in what was a very physical encounter with the 23 point gap no reflection on how close this fixture was,
Wheatley made inroads in to the Oxford 22 with strong running, Oxford conceded a penalty at the breakdown coming off their feet giving Aaron Laman an early shot at goal, with the ball striking the upright great pressure from Michale Ridge forced the error, the resulting scrum provided platform to work from but unfortunately poor handling let Oxford off the hook, Oxford to there credit kept the ball in hand and broke from deep, with Wheatley scrambling in defence the visitors were able to put in some cover tackles but not before the grubber kick stretched the defence, in an attempt to cover the ball the Oxford 10 ran across the front of captain Alex Acklam and with the former going to ground a penalty try was awarded despite the ball being gathered by covering wing Luke Ball. 7-0
Wheatley remained focused agains pushing up into the 22 but things would not click several handling errors giving Oxford a get out, against the run of play Oxford were able to break from deep but with some great cover tackling from Jordan Hook Wheatley were able to reagin som composure and keep Oxford at bay.
A resulting scrum allowed Oxford to scrummage 10 yard out with another variation of the scrum laws the Oxford flanker was allowed to break prior to the scrum ending and crash over for a try. 14-0
Wheatley agains dusted them selves down headed back up field tis time awards a penalty infront of goal with Aaron Laman adding 3 points. 14-3
More of the same for the remainder of the half but all to frequently Wheatley would turn over possession and become content in defence, With Half Times arrival Wheatley wee far from out of the game.
The beginning of the second half saw Oxford up their physicality at the breakdown with Wheatley forced to over commit to secure ball, Wheatley did have more chances in to get over the try line but poor execution again allowed Oxford to re group.
2 further tries followed for Oxford with Wheatley unable to answer, with the Lineout functioning well wheatley's pack will be disappointed with their scrum but with the enforced changes this week we take heart with the introduction of several colts and new arrivals,
We now look forward to Risborough coming to Holton in a couple of weeks with plenty to work on.