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RUGBY UNION: Witney bag derby spoils
9:00am Tuesday 11th February 2014 in Sport
SOUTH WEST 1 EAST
WITNEY soared to fourth in the table after a 17-0 victory over Grove at Hailey Road.
A howling wind made conditions difficult, but Witney used it better to control the first half.
With fly half Ted Landray kicking well for territory, Witney took the lead on 12 minutes.
A driven line-out five metres from the Grove line saw hooker Richie Craig crash over, although Grove were agg-rieved that referee Adam Wookey played on with scrum half Roger Sevier down nursing a dislocated finger.
Player-coach Craig was a last-minute replacement after Adam Copperwheat was injured in the warm-up.
This also meant flanker Carl Campbell stepped up as captain, with Copperwheat due to deputise for Jez Hicks.
Grove indiscipline allowed Landray to slot three penalties for a 14-0 half-time lead, although Witney had lock Charlie Bennet sin-binned.
Fly half Dave Johnson went close for Grove after a great solo break before having to leave the field with a shoulder injury.
Centre Nick Sevier and wing Guy Nicholl also threatened for the visitors.
Grove lost their way tactically in the second half, while Witney’s defence was very aggressive and organised.
Landray slotted a further penalty for 17-0 on 55 minutes.
A disappointing afternoon for Grove ended with Roger Sevier being yellow-carded.
Leaders Oxford Harlequins saw their match at Windsor postponed due to waterlogging.