With three consecutive victories, the Blue Boar ‘A’ (Chipping Norton) are back in contention to successfully defend their North Division title.
Their latest triumph was a hard-fought 59-54 edging out of the Woodman (North Leigh), enabling them to boast a record of four wins from seven starts, a statistic they share with their two main rivals: stablemate, the Blue Boar Bees, and the Bell (Lower Heyford).
The ‘Bees’ maintained their recent good form in overwhelming the Bell, 75-48, and thereby consigning their victims to back-to-back defeats and, in the process, supplanting them at the head of the table courtesy of their heavier scoring.
This section was also notable for the Sun Inn (Hook Norton) finally breaking their duck, as they despatched near-neighbours, the Chequers (also ‘Chippy’), 64-54.
Not to be outdone, the Black’s Head (Bletchingdon) emulated their friends in the north by registering their first positive result of the campaign. They fashioned a 62-53 success over the inconsistent Eight Bells (Long Crendon), in what was their first visit to that hostelry, but remains rooted to the bottom of the West.
The Royal Sun (Begbroke) stays top after a convincing display against the Chandos Arms (Oakley), running out 79-53 winners, their grip on the championship tightened further by setbacks for both of their chief challengers. Following their poor showing at the Seacourt Bridge (Botley) seven days earlier, the White Hart (Eynsham) perished again, this time at home to that handy outfit from Wheatley, the King’s Arms, by a scoreline of 61-67.
Meanwhile, after a brilliant display in overturning the Hatchet (Childrey) the previous Thursday, the Windrush Club (Witney) had the wind cut from their sails as they succumbed, 57-67, to visitors, the Seacourt Bridge. The latter have crept, largely unnoticed, into second place.
In the Premiership, there were comparatively easy nights for both the Plough (Wolvercote) and Far From The Madding Crowd ‘A’ (Oxford City). The Plough summarily dismissed the Gardener’s Arms (North Parade), 82-64, whilst FFTMC ‘A’ breezed past a strangely subdued, although slightly below-strength, Hatchet, 76-60. Front runners, the Ploughman’s Bunch! (Wolvercote) had an altogether much tougher evening. They had to rely on their knowledge of Marx Brothers films to enable them to correctly answer the final question of the evening and so squeeze past their unfortunate yet brave opposition, the Green Road Club (Kidlington), 73-71.
The North Oxford Conservative Club (Summertown) overcame a plucky Far From The Madding Crowd ‘B’, who turned in a much better performance than in recent matches, but nevertheless went down 48-68. If they could just put names to faces in the picture round! The Con Club take over pacesetting duties in the Oxford Division but, I fear, this will be short-lived.
Finally, in the East, the Green Dragon (Haddenham) roars on. By prevailing 69-57 over the Black Swan (East Oxford), they recorded their sixth win of the season, and look set to regain their crown. Does the Premiership await?
A full fixture list and details of the league can be found at oxfordshirequizleague.co.uk