Below-par Stow remain top after beating Harwell

Berks/Bucks & Oxon Premier.

Harwell 6 Stow-on-the-Wold 34.

STOW extended their winning sequence in the league to 11 but only after their most unconvincing performance of the season.

Stow struggled to gain any momentum and when they did countless handling errors and conceded penalties gave away possession.

It took 15 minutes before the first score; Andrew Piercey gained valuable ground after a quick penalty before offloading to Craig Chapman who scored under the posts. Nick Cafearo converted.

From the restart, Stow fumbled and a Harwell scrum in the Stow 22 led to a penalty which they converted.

Stow replied when a break from midfield by Piercey led to James Holmes racing in.

Just before the break, Stow won a scrum against the head, Chapman picked up at No. 8 and drove over. The latter two tries both went unconverted.

Harwell just had time for their second penalty when Stow were caught with their hands in the ruck.

The second half proved even more frustrating, two try opportunities went begging due to the ball being dropped over the line. The bonus point try came from Holmes who crashed through several tackles.

Alex Kelly then raced from inside his own half, beating several defenders on the way, to touch down under the posts; Cafearo converted.

The final try came from the restart; the forwards took the ball blind and when play went open, Holmes was again able to outpace the defence to score.

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