Oxford 22 Oldham 38

Date published: Monday, June 30, 2014

ANOTHER good all-round performance, ending with an eight-try triumph at Oxford, kept us snapping away at the heels of leaders York City Knights at the top of Kingstone Press Championship One.

We’ve lost only two of our 13 league games — there isn’t another side in the division that can match that — and when we return to action against Gloucester at Whitebank on Sunday, July 13 we will be the only side out of the nine in competition which will still be defending an unbeaten home record.
To their credit, Oxford wouldn’t “go away”, but we took the lead for the second time with a Josh Crowley try midway through the first half and a few minutes later the other half of our impressive second-row pairing, Danny Langtree, also got over the line.
That put us two scores in front and we remained two scores ahead, at least, for the remainder of a game in which we scored two absolute cracking tries within two minutes of the second half getting under way.
Oxford, it has to be said, troubled us a bit when they utilised some fast backs on a very wide pitch or, alternatively, used a short kicking game to put the ball into no-man’s land behind our defensive line but well in front of the advancing Steve Nield.
They had dangerous attackers in pacy winger Michael Crabtree and exciting full-back Sean Morris, but in the main we were too strong for them all over the park, as evidenced by our eight tries to the home side’s four.
Wingers Mo Agoro and Dale Bloomfield, our two top try scorers, further enhanced their reputations as the best pair of wingers in the division with ‘Bloomers’ scoring twice and Mo scoring the opening try to extend his scoring run to a remarkable nine matches.
Lewis Palfrey, alas, had one of those games as goalkicker when he struggled to find range and accuracy on a consistent basis. He landed three out of eight — one of them an absolute beauty from the left-hand touchline.
But two of his five failures were from relatively comfortable positions on a day which the division’s top goalkicker and leading points scorer will want to forget.
Oldham scorers: — goals, Palfrey (3); tries, Agoro, Crowley, Langtree (2), Bloomfield (2), Wood, Cookson.
Oxford: Morris; Briggs, Mulkeen, Brooker, Crabtree; Rowland, Connick; Ellison, Thompson, Osborn, Baird, Hoggins, Rice. Subs: Sharratt, Davies, Hayles, Blaney.
Oldham: Nield; Agoro, Cookson, Ford, Bloomfield; Palfrey, Roper; Boults, Whitmore, Joy, Crowley, Langtree, Gee. Subs: Hughes, Wood, Ward, Mason.
Ref: Peter Brooke.