BANBURY BELLES 0 KENILWORTH LADIES 24
KENILWORTH LADIES RETURN TO WINNING WAYS AT BANBURY
Kenilworth Ladies secured their first win in four games on Sunday as they beat the Banbury Belles 24-0 on a wet and windy afternoon at Bodicote Park. The result sees them get back to winning ways after three narrow defeats against more established sides, writes Sophie Freestone.
Kenilworth made a blistering start to the match and some excellent passing took the visitors deep inside the Banbury 22. Powerful running from centre Gemma Gilleece almost took her over the line but she was brought down just metres short. Kenilworth made the most of their strong start however, and guest player Annie Rankin was on hand to score her second try in as many games. The conversion attempt from out wide was only narrowly missed by captain Sarah Munday, to give Kenilworth an early 5-0 lead.
The visitors continued their fine start to the match and their lead was soon extended thanks to another try out on the right, this time from Gilleece who eventually got her name on the score board after some good pressure on the Banbury defence. Again, the conversion attempt was just wide from Munday to leave Kenilworth 10 points to the good after just 20 minutes.
With half time approaching, the visitors were looking for a third try and it soon came through number 8 Caroline Spence. Some powerful and decisive running from the back rower allowed her to break free from Banbury's defence just inside the home side's 22 to touch down under the posts. The conversion was successful from Munday and the visitors lead was extended to 17 points.
Banbury at times looked dangerous with ball in hand, making some quick breaks, but Kenilworth's defence was impressive and ensured that the hosts remained scoreless at the break.
With the second half underway, the strong wind was now in Banbury's favour, and their attacking play on the right wing was dangerous, posing some problems for the visitors. Kenilworth's tackling was excellent, however, nullifying the threat from the Belles.
The weather conditions were against Kenilworth during the second half, but that didn't hold them back. Spence and Ada Ajoku continued to make some superbly powerful breaks up the middle of the park, and Kenilworth soon found themselves inside the Belles' 22. Gilleece was involved once again, almost scoring her second try of the match, but was unfortunate to knock the ball on as she went over the line.
The fourth try did come however, courtesy of Spence who added to her earlier score as she crossed to the right of the posts. Munday added the extras to give the home side a 24-0 lead.
As the match drew to a close, Banbury continued to attack down the right. They were unable to take advantage of their attacking opportunities in some good field positions, however, and the match ended with Kenilworth securing a deserved 24-0 victory.