Performances improve but Biggy slip to bottom

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Biggleswade lost narrowly to fourth placed Oadby-Wyggestonians in Midlands 2 East (South) by 13 points to 22.

It was another determined performance with the only difference between the two sides being an interception try and a string of penalties.

Biggleswade did themselves no favours in this area of their play being punished for repeat offences by a referee being assessed.

There were six absentees from the side put out two weeks ago most notable being the injured Michael Twigg and the farmer boys Michael Kendall and Will Simkins.

Luke Haverley came in to fill the number nine shirt putting in a feisty performance. His kicking was something which has been lacking at times this season.

Oadby scored first and then added a converted try which came from an interception when Biggleswade were starting to find their feet. This was difficult on the sticky surface which made changing direction a lottery. That this pitch was chosen by the home team was a surprise as alongside was the artificial pitch in perfect condition.

The deficit was soon reduced by a successful penalty from Luke Haverley. It came after sustained pressure from the Biggy pack in which the ball was recycled several times before Oadby were caught offside.

However after just 20 minutes Biggleswade lost the services of hooker Sasha Heath who retired with a strained neck injury. He was replaced by the piratical looking Eudo Scheibner.

The score was soon all square again as giant number eight James Ramsey grounded the ball for his second try of the season. Unfortunately he too was soon destined for the sidelines to be replaced by the much smaller Liam Price. The loss of power from the number eight was certainly a factor in the outcome.

The home team added two more penalties before the break mainly for Biggleswade going to ground at the breakdown or holding on with support was slow in reaching the ball carrier.

Now with the slope and the benefit of the breeze at their backs Oadby might have expected to rack up some points. But Biggleswade defended bravely and had Oadby scrabbling to defend their line. The only scores were penalties with two for the hosts and one for the visitors again slotted home by Luke Haverley.

Man of the match for your correspondent was flanker Liam Dunne. Perhaps his slighter frame allowed him to glide over the sticky surface when others were bogged down. But he was everywhere in attack and defence. Not far behind was centre Alex Borg who smashed his way through any gap he could. When the role was reversed he tackled his heart out.

An exhausted skipper Dom Nott said that there were several good things which show improvement. “We are getting there”, he added.

With just four games left Biggleswade must cause some upsets if they are to avoid relegation. Oakham at home in two weeks is next up followed by a trip to Olney after Easter. Then it is home to Peterborough and away to Rushden & Higham to finish off the campaign. None will be easy but with the new determination all are winnable.

Midlands 2 East (South)

P W D L PF PA Pts

Melton Mowbray 18 17 1 0 706 198 86

Mkt Harborough 18 16 0 2 517 271 76

Lutterworth 18 14 0 4 639 251 73

Oadby Wyggs 18 13 0 5 486 257 60

Oakham 18 9 0 9 331 352 45

Belgrave 18 8 2 8 380 376 44

Olney 18 7 0 11 382 582 37

Peterborough 18 6 0 12 352 451 31

Vipers 18 4 2 12 248 419 29

Rushden & Higham 18 3 1 14 300 490 23

Leicester Forest 18 5 0 13 220 629 22

Biggleswade 18 3 0 15 210 495 18