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Matt Burrows

Pangbourne College’s 1st XV produced its performance of the season so far to triumph in the Area Cup Final, cantering to a 45-10 victory over LVS Ascot.

Playing in bitter cold under floodlights at Maidenhead RFC, Nick Riley took Pangbourne into an early lead with two well-taken penalties, before Ascot responded with a try to bring the scores within a point.

Pangbourne was the more dangerous side in a back-and-forth first half and soon extended its lead, with tries coming from Edward Farish and Dan Simmons. Despite dominating, a momentary lapse on the stroke of half time led to an Ascot try and the teams went in 20-10 at the interval.

Shortly after the break, Simmons, who put in an excellent all-round performance throughout, produced the moment of the game. Picking up an Ascot kick just inside his own half, the number nine broke several tackles in a mazy run, exchanged passes with a supporting teammate, before driving over the line.

This set the tone for a comprehensive second-half display which saw tries from Ben Knight and two from substitute, Hamish Owen, propel Pangbourne to a 45-10 victory.

In what has been a difficult season for the 1st XV, this was a tremendous performance to provide the side with a confidence boosting trophy.

Following the match, coach of the team, Mr Roger Cheeseman, said: “Obviously the boys have had a tough season. There wasn’t a lot of good fortune at the start but slowly they’ve built a winning mentality. We’ve won the last couple of games and got ourselves into this final with a lot of hard work from the guys in the upper sixth particularly, although there are some very good players in the lower sixth. This is a very worthwhile victory for them and it’s great for the school.”

Selected 1st XV vs LVS Ascot (Licensed Victuallers’):

1.       Luca van der Wyck

2.       Christian Tivey

3.       Andrew Bissett

4.       Nick White

5.       Michael Gipson

6.       Seth Grieve (Vice-Captain)

7.       Edward Farish

8.       Ben Knight

9.       Dan Simmons

10.   Jack James

11.   J.J. Sugden

12.   Sasha Efimov (Captain)

13.   Nick Riley

14.   Joel Fletcher

15.   Fred Hobby

16.   Arsian Dzhumamuradov

17.   Will Hebbes

18.   Jude Beebee

19.   Hamish Owen

20.   Kyle Swire-Thompson

21.   Max Sharpe-Matthews

22.   Oli Rayner

Coaches: Mr R Cheeseman & Mr C Sutton

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