Reading Raiders returned to winning ways with an emphatic victory over Worcester Jaguars.
With covid-depleted Worcester only able to bring a bare thirteen players, the visitors were faced with an uphill struggle throughout the game – yet the match was punctuated by three opportunist scoring chances resulting in tries for the Jaguars.
Quickly the Raiders’ scoreline doubled as the game’s powerhouse utility forward, Gavin Egan, this week playing in the second row, stormed over from a Sol Robinson feed to bring the score to 8-0, to the home side, to which Ben Radford added the conversion.
Alex Dorliac spied his chance with a nifty run that deceived the defence, as he added his well-taken
try, again goaled by Ben Radford, to increase the margin to 20-0 by the end of the first quarter.
At this point Zac Mayo, introduced as forward replacement, with a forceful run.
This break saw him offload to supporting left wing Elliot Wilson who proved his finishing capabilities for a classy try. Ben Radford’s goal brought the score to 28-0.
New recruit Roy Wilkinson was the next to get on the scoresheet as he crashed in from the left wing to register his inaugural try.
Radford’s simple goal kick made it 42-0 as more Worcester misery followed when Lewis Donnelly made one his typical barges, fed by Charlie Price at loose forward, after he gathered a misplaced dropout.
Nevertheless, the Jaguars began the second half with renewed vigour.
Luke Schofield, so far contained by a courageous Worcester defence, turned the tables and produced one of his typical solo tries.
Not deterred by this, Worcester’s Will Baillon leapt on a Raiders passing error to start a kick and chase, which he gathered and brought the Jaguars their first score. This was quickly followed by another try, this time from a spirited Tom Lawlor initiative.
Raiders were now back in the driving seat as Ben Radford’s conversion sailed over from wide.
Schofield scored again from a short pass and Ben Radford added the goal.
A further try by Gavin Egan was a just reward for his undefendable charging runs.
Schofield’s final try scoring burst ended in him just about hopping over the line and pulling his hamstring along the way. The Jaguars finished the game with a well-worked and deserved try for Brad Smith.
Reading Raiders: Luke Schofield; Max Boucher; Tom Plater; Harry Stapleton; Elliot Wilson; Ben Radford; John Boucher; Andy Parr; ; Sol Wallis-Robinson; Lewis Donnelly; Dave Abbott; Gavin Egan; Charlie Price.
Replacements: Zac Mayo; Roy Wilkinson; Mike Beckly; Ollie Radford; Matt Wise; Alex Dorliac; Christian Floyd.
By Dave Part