Match Report
Oundle School 5th XV vs  Stowe School
On: Saturday, 07 Oct 2017
Venue: at Home

On Saturday, the 5th XV played Stowe, below is the match report:

The 5th XV's run as the only unbeaten team in the whole rugby club was further continued on Saturday with another dominant win over Stowe.

The odds were stacked against us as a significantly larger opposition, complete with numbered skin-tight kit and adorned with jewellery, lined up opposite us to kick off the match. However, this was not to be the case. Sun Tzu, a master of war, famously stated: "He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks", and our same spirit was that of determination.

From the first kick, it was clear that Stowe's skill set was vastly inferior, with penalties conceded for coming in at the side, hands in the ruck, and high tackles in the first 10 minutes alone. Our first try of many was taken care of by the 5th team's very own Julian Savea: Mark Bonner, who then doubled his tally about 15 minutes later with yet another unstoppable dash down the wing. An enterprising break through enemy lines from Hugo Walford, and a brutal display of strength, skill and tactical nuance from Harry Squire put Oundle well ahead at the break at 22-0, with a constant rotation between Angus Bishopp and Matthew Slade, with or without a kicking tee, adding the additional points.

By this point, it was clear that the small matter of having to actually play rugby wasn't going to get in the way of the Stowe boy's quick wit and comedic expertise at any opportunity during the match, with a constant battery of immature jibes and swear words coming both our way and our valiant referee Mr Sisley's throughout. However, this only spurred us on further, and despite an array of drops, fumbles and scrappy rucks from both teams, the points flowed more freely in the second half. They ran through our defences for a couple of tries, before we retaliated with yet another from Squire, finely assisted by George Brettle, and Thomas Pillsbury proving himself on his 5th team debut by fending off about 3 defenders and collapsing valiantly under the posts.

It was time for the finishers, and Jamie Morrison would have made Eddie Jones proud with 2 exceptional runs down the wing, well over 50 metres each, to add two late tries to our tally. Our tired legs couldn't stop Stowe's last try in the final play, but the game was well won by that point at 52-24.

Overall, despite neither side playing anywhere near their best rugby, a competitive and enjoyable encounter took place, and hopefully the 5th team's run can extend long into next half term.

Hugo Walford