Stamford Rugby Club’s women’s team are top of the table
Stamford Women have moved nine points clear at the top of the NC 2 Midlands (North) table with just three games of their season remaining.
They were 5-25 away winners at Kesteven on Sunday and remain in the ascendency to gain their second promotion in two seasons.
The purple, black and whites could also end the season as champions if they stay clear of second-placed Mansfield who have two matches in hand on Stamford with the sides also meeting in their next match on Sunday, February 11.
Stamford travelled along the A1 on Sunday to battle both a very strong Kesteven team as well as the strong winds, biting cold and the odd spot of rain.
While eventually ran out winners it was, for the most part, a very equal contest with both sides putting on a very enthralling show, despite the conditions.
Stamford were first to trouble the scoreboard when a series of surging charges by their forwards in the Kesteven half eventually led to Brogan Cranfield gathering the ball and, with several home players clinging on to her, charged towards and over the line.
Both teams spent the rest of the first half foraging into their opposition's half.
Stamford's forwards, in particular Emily Russell and Immy Isaacs, were strong with both their running and metres gained which unfortunately did not materialise into further tries in the first half.
Stamford did manage to increase their lead to 8-0 at half-time when Daisy Attley, battling a strong wind, slotted a well-executed penalty kick.
In the second half, Stamford found themselves with the wind behind them and started the period with great gusto and vigour.
Great handling, particularly from Meg Wright and Jasmine Murray, led to the flying winger Jorja Matchwick sprinting down the wing to score in the corner.
The visitors, with the wind behind them, started to gather momentum with a number of powerful incursions into the Kesteven half.
However, the home team also turned on the power and had a couple of strong raids into the purple, black and whites' half but were unable to penetrate and go over the line mainly thanks to robust tackling from the defence and in particular Anna Glendenning and Chloe Goldsmith.
However, in the end it was Matchwick who troubled the scoreboard again with two more tries to complete her hat-trick with Attley adding a conversion.