Biggleswade’s run of close defeats continued with a narrow 10-7 home loss to Oadby-Wyggestonians 7-10 in their latest Midlands 2 East (South) clash.
Biggleswade should have won as they battered away at the defence of the visitors for most of the second half but just could not find a way through. Eventually it was a penalty try as yet again Oadby transgressed in the “red zone”.
A few minutes before they had lost a prop that was guilty of yet another infringement. Biggleswade could have been miffed that this action was not taken earlier. But they had several kickable penalties in front of the posts for which they opted for the scrum alternative.
Conditions were not good for running rugby with a cruel biting wind chilling fingers which fumbled passes which would have been taken on a milder day. Biggleswade were against the elements in the first half and conceded an early try. It came after a period of desperate tackling they just ran out of players wide out. The scorer was allowed to run round under the posts making the conversion formality.
Games against Oadby have often been close but this early reversal and the dominance of the visitors with the wind at their backs threatened that more scores would quickly follow. But Biggleswade dug deep and snuffed out every onslaught on their line with some determined dogged defence.
Players to catch the eye included winger Will Roake who more than once put his body on the line falling on the bouncing ball to cancel the threat. Oadby did have a couple of chances to stretch their lead with penalty attempts but only the second one went over. This was awarded when an attempt to stop the scrum half’s pass from the base of a scrum was adjudged to be a deliberate knock-on.
Apart from this blemish scrum-half Michael Trigg had another excellent match distributing the ball well when often under pressure. He also made darting, probing runs without unlocking the tight defence. He combined well with number eight Jonathan Hamilton who cleared up many a mess and threatened to break his way through the Oadby line.
Turning round only ten points down and with the wind in their favour Biggleswade must have been expecting to get enough scores to over haul the Wyggs. When the ball was remotely straight at the lineout in the cross wind Biggleswade won good clean ball thanks to the twin efforts of Jonathan Hamilton and Slawek Bukowski.
But despite being camped on Oadby’s line and recycling the ball time after time they could not get the vital score. The referee awarded a string of penalties against the defence and should really have gone to his pocket earlier for the yellow card than he did. When Oadby’s prop was dismissed to the bin with less than five minutes on the clock there was not time for Biggleswade to take more advantage than the one penalty try which they were awarded. Michael Trigg added the conversion but Biggleswade could not get another score in what proved to be the “last play” of the match.
Biggleswade’s only consolation was a point for finishing within seven points of the victors. There is a break from league action on Saturday before a trip to Oakham the week after.
Biggleswade: D Nott, S Heath, J Caulfield (A Fage), S Bukowski, K Loan (J Ramsey), L Dunne (M Kendall), M Haddow, J Hamilton, M Trigg, M Hill, W Roake, M Hall, A Borg, G Rutt, K Lofty.