Rance hails team effort in Witney win

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Stratford director of rugby Tom Rance. Photo by Mark Williamson.

DIRECTOR of rugby Tom Rance praised his team’s collective efforts after Stratford saw off Witney 22-15 at Pearcecroft on Saturday.

James Wootton, Mike Dawes and Callum Cook all went over for tries as an in-form Stratford made it four league wins from their last five.

“It was a very good spectacle of rugby despite the conditions,” said Rance.

“We played with a fast temp, defended well and ultimately took our chances when they were on offer. We didn’t leave anything on the pitch.”

Arron Lambourne’s penalty put Witney ahead, but Stratford hit back with two tries inside the opening quarter of an hour from Wootton and Dawes, both converted by Jon Duncan.

A penalty try got Witney back into the game, before a Duncan penalty saw Stratford lead 17-10 at the break.

Stratford extended their lead early in the second half thanks to another Duncan penalty, followed by a Callum Cook try in the corner.

Jamie Burke’s unconverted try gave the visitors some hope, but Stratford held firm to seal an impressive win.

“It was very much an 80-minute performance and that’s something we’ve been crying out for,” Rance added.

“There were a lot of stand-out performances. Jon Duncan and James Wootton had great games and the bench made a fantastic input when they came on and saw out the game.”

Stratford are back at Pearcecroft this weekend when they take on tenth-placed Swindon.