Head coach Lambden warns of bigger tests after Ducks overcome All Blacks

Mark Kentish on the charge. Picture: Darren Slater
Mark Kentish on the charge. Picture: Darren Slater

Aylesbury head coach Jon Lambden has warned his side they face will ‘bigger challenges’ in the coming weeks and months after they registered a second successive league victory at the weekend.

The Ducks overcame Oxfordshire-based Gosford All Blacks 19-10 at Ostler’s Field to remain fifth in the Southern Counties North, seven points behind leaders Buckingham.

Lambden said: “It was important to get the win to keep the momentum going ahead of bigger challenges in the weeks and months to come.

“The boys put in a strong performance which saw some of the best phases of play we’ve put together this season but execution under pressure let us down in parts.”

With a trip to fellow Bucks club High Wycombe to come this weekend, Lambden added: “We will take the win and work on the development areas this week ahead of High Wycombe RUFC on Saturday.”

It was a cagey opening to Saturday’s game with both teams probing the other’s defence but there was no breakthrough until full-back Mark Kentish finished off a well-worked move out wide after impressive handling from centre Scott McKenzie.

Kentish added the extras but Gosford were proving no pushovers and they came steaming back at their hosts, slotting over a penalty and then intercepting a loose pass to race in under the posts.

With the try converted, the Ducks trailed 10-7 but going behind seemed to shock them into action and after sustained pressure in the Gosford 22, the ball was worked one side to the other, stretching the visiting defence to its limits, resulting in Kentish going over for his second of the afternoon.

This time the conversion was wide but, importantly, the Ducks led 12-10 at half-time.

Neither side gave much away in an equally low-key second period, but Aylesbury always had the upperhand in the driving maul and they capitalised on that fact with second row Cory Neighbour powering across the line almost untouched from close-range.

With Kentish converting and Aylesbury now leading 19-10, the onus and expectation was on them to round off the day with a bonus-point fourth try, and it looked to have come when Kentish went over for his hat-trick, only for the score to be chalked off due to a foot straying beyond the dead ball line.

With no bonus-point forthcoming, Aylesbury ended the day somewhat disappointed but the victory keeps them in contention at the right end of the table.