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RUGBY UNION: Landray stars as Witney power into fourth place
SOUTH WEST 1 EAST
WITNEY made it seven straight wins with a clinical 25-11 victory over Maidenhead at Hailey Road and leapfrogged their opponents into fourth place.
With young fly half Ted Landray pulling the strings to great effect, the hosts scored four tries and could have had more.
Maidenhead, who were disrupted by an early injury to hooker Lewis Jones, matched Witney up front, but couldn't handle their creative backs.
Landray and Maidenhead full back Mike Virgo traded penalties before the visitors opened the try-scoring.
Their well-drilled pack produced a powerful driving maul, which ended with flanker Alex Kent going over.
Witney were level on 17 minutes, when full back Robbie Mills stretched over on the left wing to finish off good work from No 8 Joe Rowles and Landray.
A fumble in the visitors’ defence offered a good chance for try No 2, but centre Henry Lamb could not find the scoring pass.
The hosts should have extended their lead again on the half hour, when scrum half Gareth Campbell followed up Landray’s penalty as it came back off the post.
Centre Matt Clarke knocked on as the try line beckoned, but made amends with a fine solo try on 34 minutes that exposed some weak Maidenhead tackling.
Witney led 13-8 at the break and took control when Landray ran in a try similar to Clarke’s from the edge of the 22 and converted his own effort.
Maidenhead captain Simon Cripps immediately threatened, but was adjudged to have knocked on as he looked to dive over.
Although Virgo slotted a second penalty on 55 minutes, Witney kept pressing and created a fourth try for wing Arron Lambourne from a very slick scrum move.
Referee Christopher Whalen maintained a high penalty count, with crossing a common offence, but Witney had no trouble closing out the victory.
Witney: Mills, Lambourne (Empson 71), Clarke, H Lamb, Monks, Landray, G Campbell, Burke (Richardson 48), A Copperwheat (capt), Richens, Bennett, Mortimer, C Campbell, Catherall, Rowles (Muller 48).
Referee: C Whalen (Oxfordshire).
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