James Hayward brace inspires Cantabrigian to first win of the campaign
And Cantabs bag bonus point to boot
James Hayward touched down twice for Cantabrigian as they earned their first win of the season, beating Basildon 33-24 in London League 2NE.
With players returning to bolster the squad, Cantabs took the lead after three minutes as Richard Knight put in Hayward to score in the corner, and he also added the extras.
Basildon replied with a penalty and then took the lead through a converted try.
Cantabs weathered a storm before gaining a half-time lead as captain Knight sprinted clear to score under the posts, with Hayward converting.
After Basildon had a player sin-binned, they extended their advantage through a catch and drive and Jack Holland took the ball at the back of the maul to touch down. Hayward’s conversion made it 21-10.
Basildon battled back and got another converted try, but Cantabs went down the other end and from another catch and drive, Danny Richards crashed over for what was their first try-bonus point of the season.
There was a fifth try for Cantabs when Hayward intercepted a pass on his own 10m line to race away and score, he also kicked the conversion to make it 33-17.
There was still time for Basildon to get a consolation try, but Cantabs had wrapped up the win by that point.
Cantabs will now be looking to close the gap on Harlow, who are one point above them in the table, and Ipswich, who are seven clear.
But they face a difficult match this Saturday (October 27) against leaders Woodford, who have won six out of six.
Shelford, though, are still looking for their first win of the season as they were beaten 33-12 at Brentwood in London & SE Premier.
They are marooned at the foot of the table, and face Sutton & Epsom at home this Saturday.