Three on the bounce for UBRFC
The 1st XV kicked off their BUCS campaign under the floodlights at Coombe Dingle against city rivals UWE, and got their season off to a fantastic start, winning 23-5 to continue the run of form UBRFC have been on since pre-season. In front of a crowd of over 500, what started as a scrappy, close game eventually opened up in the second half with Bristol pulling away during the second half.
A penalty from fly-half Ewan Evans meant Bristol led 3-0 early on, but would have fallen behind had it not been for some poor goalkicking from the UWE fullback. Instead, Bristol pushed further ahead, with debutant Ben Sykes sniping over from close range. Continual pressure from Bristol meant UWE were unable to exit their own half for the majority of the first 40, and this resulted in centre Ali Greig dotting down just before half time; Evans adding the conversion to put Bristol 15-0 at the break.
The second half started in a similar fashion to the first, with both sides making errors to hand possession back to the other team. However, the introduction of Bristol's bench made a big difference, which allowed captain Ollie Lyons to score late on out wide. Evans missed the conversion, but slotted a penalty not long after to extend the lead to 23-0.
A controversial sin-binning for an alleged high tackle for substitute Macca Hayward threatened to let UWE back into the game, but their late try proved to be nothing more than a consolation, and Bristol were the ones left celebrating in front of a big home crowd at full time. Congratulations must go to all debutants, but in particular, to first years Ben Sykes, Ollie Bluck, Will Sharp and Tomek Pozniak, who kept calm under pressure and didn't let the scale of the occasion get to them.
Attention turns now towards next week's game away at Bath, where the 1sts will be looking to continue their fine run of form.
UBRFC 23 UWE 5
Tries: Sykes, Greig, Lyons
Conversions: Evans (1)
Penalties: Evans (2)