KINGSTONE PRESS CHAMPIONSHIP ONE
OXFORD edged out basement boys South Wales Scorpions at the death to record a 29-22 victory at Iffley Road.
The sides were level at 22-22 with a minute to go when Jimmy Rowland slotted over a drop goal.
Then, from the final set of the game, Sam Blaney chased a hopeful kick and outran his markers to get the final try, which Rowland converted to the joy of the home fans.
Scorpions had been three minutes away from securing their third win of the season in a see-saw clash.
Oxford took the lead after winning a penalty on Scorpions’ 20-metre line, with Rory Sharratt going over from dummy half and Rowland converting.
However, Scorpions were soon level. After winning repeat sets, Harrison Elliott stormed over and Paul Emanuelli added the goal.
The normally reliable Sean Morris almost gave away a try at one end, then fumbled the ball as he was going to score at the other.
It couldn’t have been travel that affected his concentration as his house not only looks out, but is inside the Iffley Road ground.
But his teammate Andrew Hoggins who commutes a little bit further, coming from Southampton, made up for that with a stunning try.
He picked up the ball near to the half-way line and weaved through the visitors’ defence to score, Rowland converting for 12-6. Again Scorpions hit back, with Lloyd O’Connor scoring a classic hooker’s try, diving over from the dummy-half position.
Emanuelli converted and it was 12-12 at half-time after the referee controversially blew up, despite Oxford having played the ball before the hooter sounded and 20 metres from goal.
Early in the second half, a fine run and try from Ian Newbury, converted by Emanuelli, put Scorpions ahead for the first time.
This time it was Oxford who drew level as Matty Hadden ran through with Rowland again good with the boot.
Back to the other other end, and youngster Paul Edwards ran through to score with seven minutes left on the clock, making it 22-18 to the visitors.
Oxford rallied and after a useful kick, Marcus Brooker scored in the corner.
Rowland missed the conversion, but his drop goal was enough to win the match before Blaney’s try proved to be the icing on the cake.
Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.
Latest Sport news
2:00pm Friday 19th December 2014
BRIAN Howard’s situation at Oxford United is unclear after head coach Michael Appleton admitted he did not know whether the midfielder would be offered an extension to his short-term contract.
12:33pm Friday 19th December 2014
PIRI Weepu returns to the London Welsh starting line-up for tomorrow's Aviva Premiership fixture with Saracens at Allianz Park (KO 3pm).
12:00pm Friday 19th December 2014
JOSH Ashby is good enough to play in Oxford United’s side right now, but the teenager knows his time will come, according to head coach Michael Appleton.
9:40am Friday 19th December 2014
RONNIE Moore is braced for a tough first game in charge of Hartlepool United after comparing opponents Oxford United to Real Madrid.
9:30am Friday 19th December 2014
John Campbell admits it would be difficult to keep his kit on if he was able to make an impact on debut for Oxford United tomorrow.
Interactive match preview: Appleton and Hylton on goals; Moore likens United to Real Madrid; Howard's future; Ashby; club stalwart departs + video
9:34am Friday 19th December 2014
Get ready for kick-off with our interactive preview of Oxford United's trip to Hartlepool
9:10am Friday 19th December 2014
THERE were times earlier this season when it felt like Danny Hylton was scoring in every game, but Oxford United’s top scorer is not getting weighed down by a sudden barren run in front of goal.
9:00am Friday 19th December 2014
FINDING a predator to turn dominance into goals has been an Achilles’ heel for Oxford United this season, but Michael Appleton is hopeful two candidates will emerge over the festive period.
8:00am Friday 19th December 2014
ABOUT 150 supporters have taken advantage of Oxford United’s offer of free transport to tomorrow’s game at Hartlepool United.
7:30am Friday 19th December 2014
North Leigh boss Mark Gee admitted he is ‘wary’ of struggling Wantage Town as his side travel to Alfredian Park in Division 1 South & West of the Evo-Stik Southern League tomorrow, writes Matthew Bruce.