Rugby crew stroll to victory

Ollie Lee 29 November 2011

In their final match before Varsity, the Blues ran out comfortable winners against a London Scottish XV, the game ending 30-7 to the University side.

Cambridge carried forth the momentum from their win against Steele-Bodgers just four days previous. They had the early pressure, driving forcefully but they were unable to carve out any clear openings and a kicking game ensued for a period.

However, when they started to hold onto the ball rather than kick it they made the breakthrough, Rob Malaney using the forcefully driven scrum to power over the line.

The Blues built on this score, Will Smith and Tom O’Toole looking menacing when running from deep. There was some decent passing by the home side and by retaining possession they were able to switch play from the right wing out to the left, presenting Matt Thomas with the chance to touchdown. Greg Cushing converted, giving Cambridge a 12-0 lead.

London Scottish rarely threatened in the first thirty minutes. However, with five minutes to go until the interval they started to create some pressure, putting together a number of phases but without any territorial gain. Some good tackling from Young in particular ensured that despite their efforts, Scottish got no reward. Indeed, it was Cambridge whom came closest to adding more points before the break as they came speeding away on the counter but, after their progress was illegally halted, the referee blew for half time.

The second half went much the same way as the first, Cambridge dominating play but for the odd moment where the away side saw some of the action. Amos scored early after the restart and some good handling from Loudon almost set Smith through soon after. When Cushing converted a penalty and Amos bagged his second try the game was effectively over as a contest, the score reading 25-0 in Cambridge’s favour.

With the game secured a couple of mistakes started to creep in, some lazy passes demonstrating lapses in concentration. Most disappointingly of all for the Blues will have been that they allowed London Scottish to score, the margin between the teams being reduced to 25-7.

Cambridge bounced back, Smith getting the try his performance merited. The final few minutes of the encounter were taken up with London Scottish attempting to add to their tally but the Blues defence held firm, a good sign given their proneness to conceding late on in previous games this season.

The victory was a good run out for the players against a reasonable London Scottish outfit although the far tougher challenge of Oxford now lies ahead. If the team can build on the positives from the last two matches and avoid any last minute injury dramas, the 129th Varsity winners may well be the ones wearing Light Blue.

Ollie Lee