MEN’S RUGBY: Wardell and Gwillam secure hard-fought win for Daventry

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Daventry secured a hard-fought 10-7 victory in the mud at Mens Own following two tries from Bradley Wardell and Jak Gwilliam.

It’s now six consecutive wins for the All Blacks as they survived a late comeback from Mens Own.

With conditions extremely difficult it was always going be a tough trip for Daventry, but they fronted up and got the result their performance deserved.

Despite the mud bath the Blacks tried to play and showed good skill levels.

Their first try came from a well constructed backs move.

Blindside winger Jake Gwilliam burst through the centres before offloading to Jake O’Keife, he moved the ball wide to Connor Robson who combined with Luke Jones and Danny Collett to send Bradley Wardell over.

Despite Own winning the set-piece battle, the Daventry forwards were much more potent around the pitch in defence and attack.

Number 8 James Heath carried well and the pack was well marshalled by scrum half Sam Dudgeon.

Dudgeon tackled superbly, communicated well and added tempo when it was needed.

It was his quick tap which led to Daventrys second try after good hands from Wardell and Ricky Haynes sent Gwilliam over in the corner.

As pitch conditions worsened it became harder and harder to play and after missing a good opportunity to close the game out Daventry were forced to defend for the last 20 minutes.

The forwards stood up to the task manfully though with Danny Collett and Russ Robinson to the fore.

Own managed a late try but Daventry survived a hairy moment or two to get the four points.

On Saturday, the Blacks have the chance to close the gap on fourth place Oundle at home.

Man of the match went to inside Jake O’Keife who was superb in defence and lively in attack.

O’Keife and Haynes are forming a strong partnership which is improving the Blacks attacking game week by week.