McDermott stars as Vets ease in

Royston Vets 32 Biggleswade Vets 7 ROYSTON had to battle hard for a win against a strong Biggleswade on Saturday with Shaun McDermott grabbing a well-taken hat-trick of tries. The Crows spent the majority of the early stages pinned in their own half as

Royston Vets 32 Biggleswade Vets 7

ROYSTON had to battle hard for a win against a strong Biggleswade on Saturday with Shaun McDermott grabbing a well-taken hat-trick of tries.

The Crows spent the majority of the early stages pinned in their own half as the visitors drove forward in numbers. However, some great break-aways from Steve Bristow and Chris Wallis relieved the pressure, and a fine individual try by Shaun McDermott resulted.

Then, after some good play by the Royston pack, a well-worked try from Dave Marvell followed.

After the break McDermott ripped the ball from the opposition and quickly added his second.

Royston were dominating up front and Letch exploded from the back of the scrum from five yards to drive over for another deserved try.

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Great tackling from Royston forced Biggleswade errors, and man-of-the-match McDermott ran in his third try.

Steve Patmore then broke through with a great run, and narrowly missed with an adventurous drop goal attempt.

But some great interchanges through the backs and forwards resulted in Paul Laurence scoring a superb try in the corner, and Colin Dacey kicked the ­conversion.

Royston Vets: Boyce, Fox, Patmore, Downes, Mitchell, Wallis, McDermott, Letch, C Dacey, P Dacey, Bristow, Marvell, Laurence, Smith, Payne, Boulter.

Royston U-17 22 Stevenage U-17 19

ROYSTON snatched victory from the jaws of defeat in a bruising encounter at the Heath on Sunday.

The Crows were only in control in the first and last 15 minutes, with the larger Stevenage side dominating the majority of the play.

Adam Smith set Royston on the road early on, with his opportunistic kick and chase creating space for the try.

Will Cottrell and centres Smith and Ben Ritsema continued to create half chances, but the Stevenage defence was equal to the task.

Then Royston lost momentum and Stevenage gradually gained the ascendancy, scoring through their outside centre to level the scores, before adding seven more points just before half time.

The Crows seemed to lose even more momentum in the second half and Stevenage went over for another try and easy conversion, taking the score to 19-5.

But with the back row of George Elbourn, Martin Goddard and James Watson prominent in the loose, Royston gradually got back in the game, prompted by some probing kicks from Cottrell and Hillman.

With 10 minutes to go they appeared to have got a mere consolation when Hillman put man-of-the-match Smith over in the right hand corner.

Cullen and flanker Charlie Brooks came back on to bolster the forwards and they stormed back up the pitch as Stevenage's discipline cracked.

A series of drives by the forwards and backs with Dan Ritsema heavily involved from full back saw Smith score his hat-trick with an identikit try in the right corner.

Another missed conversion left Royston four points short with four minutes of the game left, but by now Royston were in complete control with Stevenage a shadow of the powerful team they had been in the middle of the game.

Jon Davies caught the kick-off and immediately ran open, feeding the Ritsemas, who ripped through Stevenage to set up a fine attacking position.

The forwards drove over repeatedly giving scrum half, Fergus Martin, a plentiful supply of possession.

With bodies lying all over the place Royston spread the ball right and left until Cottrell found the space to put O'Sullivan over to score between the posts to secure a vital victory.

Royston under-14s 24 Saffron Walden 10

ROYSTON captain Nathan Crossman set his side on the road to victory with an early try.

Royston continued to pile on the pressure, with Laurie Quinney going close, before James Clare touched down to extend the lead with Louis Boulter adding the conversion.

Missing out on a number of chances, The Crows were soon on the back foot as the visitors reduced the arrears just before half-time.

There was an instant second-half reply by the hosts, with Boulter almost setting up Ben Doughty for another Royston try.

Man-of-the-match Richardson then broke from a maul, and after riding several tackles went over between the posts.

Saffron Walden replied with another try, before a good move featuring Crossman, Trim, Rawlings, and Boulter freed the powerful Clare who went over for his second of the match. Boulter's calm conversion completed a comfortable win for the impressive Crows.

* A SCHOOL tag rugby festival attracted more than 110 participants.

Pupils from Edwinstree School, young sports leaders, coached younger children in the sessions.

Year 3 and 4 pupils from Layston, Millfield, Ardeley, and Hormead Schoolstook part in the festival, organised by Edwinstree's sport coordinator Martin Hayward, and received commemorative certificates for their efforts.

The day also promoted sport and healthier lifestyles among young people.