Oxford Harlequins v Bournemouth. HT:
26/4t3c v 0.
Bright spells but with a cool Westerly wind blowing across the pitch.
The ground was damp but firm and with a reasonable covering of grass.
Oxford Harlequins kicked-off from the clubhouse and to their left.
There were a couple of changes to the backs used in the game against Westonsuper-Mare last week: Dan Pollard
resumed at fly-half in place of the unavailable Robbie Searle; ‘Eddie’ Edwards continued at inside centre in place of the injured Scott Chislett
and Ben Stewart
started at right wing instead of Edwards. In the forwards: Jo Burns
was unavailable and Joe Tarrant took his place at loosehead prop; the back row was reshuffled with Jack Hennings
replacing the injured Tony Dunkerley at openside flanker, Chris Hughes
moved to blindside flanker and Gavin Hart
replaced Hughes at No 8.
Bournemouth found themselves a try down within a minute or so when right wing Pablo Pepiol brushed past some weak tackling to finish off a brisk start by the home side. This was hardly the stuff of champions
but they responded by scoring six tries in that first half as the visitors sought to establish their authority. The second half yielded only three more tries but the game was rounded off by Tom Westlake’s debut try the result, I am sure he would admit, of an unselfish pass by full back Karim Lynch
who might have gone in for his hat-trick try instead.
A comfortable win in the end despite the doubts of conceding that early try and the fact that the Quins had secured a season-saving win down at Barnstaple the week before. The home side remained a constant threat throughout particularly through their two flankers and some lively backs who were always prepared to ‘have a go’ when on a number of occasions they might have been through if it wasn’t for some fine and determined tackling.