Campion IIs 3 - Sevenopaks 2nd XV 34, Saturday 10 September
Oaks travelled to dark and distant Essex for a hastily arranged fixture and their second friendly run-out of the season. Perhaps it was the strong wind and drizzle, or maybe the eleventh hour change of venue, but for whatever reason this match proved to be tricky and error-strewn for the outset.
Campion were certainly up for this match, part of the Paddy Dear Memorial Day. Neither side took control in the first 15 minutes, Oaks trying hard to string some phases together but some wayward passing and strong defence kept stifling any attacking moves.
Foreman carried strongly, Barry was ferocious and ever-present in defence. Campion almost took the lead with an interception on their own 22 but the hard-working Weston had the pace to haul the player down 15 metres from our line.
Oaks eventually opened the scoring when skipper Tree charged down a clearance kick and Briggs followed up to score, Suttill converting. An Oaks infringement on our 22 gave Campion a penalty which they chose to kick and with success. That, however, was the last time they got on the board.
From a scrum in Campion’s half, Briggs looped infield from his wing and drew the defence, the ball fizzing right to Saunders who cantered over for a very slick try straight off the training paddock.
Oaks were sloppy from the restart and spilled the ball with Campion driving for the line. Turned over, Barry hacked downfield and the chase was on. Not even Alexander Armstrong could prevent Briggs dotting down a kick through from Saunders, it would have been pointless to try.
Oaks were now playing with more confidence having got the upper hand in almost all aspects of this game. A quickly taken lineout in our 22 caught Campion on the hop and in a blink of an eye Vigis had scorched over in the opposite corner, soon followed by Saunders again wide out left.
A few incidents late on gave cause to wonder if this really was a friendly, but Oaks brushed them aside to register one final score, Edwards cutting a great line from centre to take the ball under the posts, Suttill converting this one for a final score of 34 -3.