Colchester 1st XV 54 | 17 Luton
Four tries in each half secures a comfortable win for Colchester 1st XV
Colchester travelled to Bedfordshire to take on old rivals Luton and came away with a convincing bonus-point victory despite not fielding their strongest team due to injury and unavailability. The blustery weather at Newlands was fortunately dry during the game, the Blacks scoring eight tries to the hosts' three.
Once again fly half David Higgins' kicking was on form converting all but one of the tries. Man-of-the -Match hooker Dan Brennan led by example from the start with a high work rate in the set pieces and about the pitch.
Simon Gray came in at loosehead prop , George Liversidge returned to the second row and the bench was made up of Jerone Awesu,and Dan Hexley as substitute forwards and debutant back Max Payne. Due to niggling injuries all three were used during the game to good effect.
Colchester kicked off and it soon became clear that Luton were not content to be whipping boys despite their low league position. For ten minutes the game ebbed and flowed until strong running by wing Harry Barton earned Colchester a lineout in Luton's half. The ball was quickly moved to Higgins who jinked through to score and convert the first try.
Over the next twenty minutes Colchester got into the game with flanker Harrison Pickett catching the eye with his strong tackling and surging runs. Indeed he was part of a move from a tap penlaty that eventually got the ball to centre Kevin Tavainavesi who scored in the left corner.
Soon Luton were on the scoreboard when they drove a lineout over the Black tryline. Not to be outdone moments later Colchester put Number 8 Brock Price over at the other end in a similar move. The Blacks were eager to get the vital fourth bonus-point try before half time which they did after centre Tom Dufficy broke through the Luton defence, charged 30 metres and gave the ball to lock Ollie White for another score making it 5-26.
The intensity of the game increased in the second half with Tavainavesi ending a good handling move to score his second try. Luton soon replied with another catch and drive try at the other end.
Later acting skipper Danny Whiteman followed up a kick ahead, gathered the ball and quick hands via Awesu and others passed it to Pickett who broke through and scored making the score 10-40.
From Luton's restart Colchester came back when scrum half Brett Cutbush's box kick was followed up by the Black pack and prop James Mitchell, using a bit of ingenuity, chipped the ball over the onrushing defence for fullback Matt Wadling to touch it down by the posts.
Later Luton's centre finally managed to breach the Black defence and score a converted try. However Colchester sealed this emphatic away win when they raced back towards the Luton end for Price to add to his impressive scoring record by claiming the final try of the game .