SATURDAY’S South West 1 East local derby went the way of Bletchley for a second time this season, but only after bottom side Olney gave them a few scares.
Bletchley’s 24-10 win lifts them to eighth place in the table as Olney look increasingly further cut adrift at the foot of the table with the games now running out. However, they did at least produce a spirited performance and came slightly closer to causing an upset than in their previous 28-12 beating at Manor Fields back in September.
On a lovely sunny afternoon at East Street it was Olney who had the first opportunity to take an early lead, but Tom Dolemore’s close range penalty attempt sailed wide of target, and the hosts would pay for that as Bletchley set up camp in their half.
Will Garrett fielded a kick from Olney in his own 22 and made an excellent 60 yard break before offloading to Dagan Probert who in turn swapped passes with George Harman who made the final run under the posts to open the scoring after only six minutes. Phil Harman then converted to give Bletchley a 7-0 lead.
And the visitors soon doubled their lead as their forwards made their strength count and from a brilliant driving maul marched Olney’s pack backwards over the try line where Josh Sprules came up from under the pack with the ball in his hands and a smile on his face.
Harman successfully converted to make it 14-0 and Bletchley’s lead was soon increased when George Harman found Will Garrett to score their third try of the day.
This all came from a great box kick from scrum half Kevin Turnbull to clear from a scrum and the backs showed their skill as the ball moved from right to left across the pitch before Harman found a gap to chip the ball.
It wasn’t all one-way traffic in the first half though as Olney broke to score what proved a consolation try when a clearance kick was charged down and the ball was collected by Chris McLean to go over the line, although the conversion attempt was then missed.
The second half was unable to live up to the standards of the first half, but both sides did manage to add further points.
Phil Harman converted another penalty for the visitors who missed out on a winning bonus point, before Tim O’Connor ran home a second try for Olney.