We Won!

Oxford come back with three tries to win 26-19

Cambridge match ourfc oxford Rugby varsity

Oxford came back to overwhelm Cambridge 26-19 and make it three straight Varsity match victories.

It was a tricky first half for the Dark Blues at Twickenham. After only fifteen minutes the side lost their talismanic captain, John Carter. Oxford Uni Sport, via their twitter feed, blamed “ligament damage in the knee”.

The calm before the storm early in the day at Twickenham (photo: @OxfordUniSport)

There were a few isolated bright spots for the Dark Blues; a surging run from number 11 Oscar Vallance showed some of the “pizzazz” that viewers of Sky Sports had been told to expect and the boot of Cassian Bramham Law had at least put points on the board, but they still headed in for half-time 16-6 down with only forty minutes left to save their season.

Cambridge touch down in the first half but their joy was short-lived

At this point a turnaround looked unlikely. The first-half scoreline didn’t really do justice to the Tabs and they were in the ascendancy again early in the second half with another penalty putting them 19-6 up.

Holly asked and the Blues delivered

However, from that point on Coach James Wade’s tactical intervention of moving Sam Egerton into scrum half started to pay off and the Dark Blues scored twenty unanswered points to see off the Cambridge challenge.

Egerton would go on to bag the Alistair Hignell Medal as Man of the Match and it was he who scored the first try of the game for OURFC, dancing around several defenders to find his way to the line. A failure to convert left the score at 19-11 to the wrong side.

The fightback was on though. James Harris, after some silky rugby, went clear before Charlie Marr joined him on the score sheet and then promptly stepped up to convert his own try to put Oxford into the lead.

Cambridge pushed hard in the latter stages with the weight advantage of their pack looking dangerous at one point as an ominous maul crawled towards the Oxford line, but with their backs to the wall the Oxford defence stayed strong and they won a penalty with one minute to play.

Marr duly scored the three points and the 2012 Varsity Match ended 26-19.

Naked ambition the key for the under-21s

The day had earlier been started in perfect style by the under-21s side who ran out 31-17 winners. After an early sin binning for Will Dace they were down at half time but tries from Barnes, Irvine and Heathcote helped to see them home.

As Cambridge players left the field in tears Egerton, fittingly, had the final word as he put the victory down to “those minutes of pain at the back end of the training session.”