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Paul Archer proud of Newbury Blues performance as impressive league form continues at Marlborough

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Newbury Blues head coach believes their first-half performance away to Marlborough was a leading factor in their 18-6 victory over the weekend.

As a result, Newbury moved into third place in the South West 1 East division in what was their sixth successive victory in the league.

Archer was thrilled his side returned after the Christmas break with a win, especially because of how difficult Marlborough can be to play against.

Newbury Blues host Oxford Harlequins this weekend
Newbury Blues host Oxford Harlequins this weekend

“It was never going to be an easy game, it was the first game back after Christmas and everyone is well rested and there was full availability.

“We always know that Marlborough see this as a local derby and will always massively up their game for us.

“They are very strong, particularly at home, and we knew it was going to be a tough day because they are very physical, skilful and they want to play with high-tempo.”

Blues found themselves 10-6 ahead at the break and then denied Marlborough from adding to their score in the second period.

“We did ourselves proud on the day,” said the head coach. “In the first-half, we were about as unplayable as I have seen us. We played up the hill in horrible conditions, but we played really well.

“We didn’t really cut loose on the scoreboard, even though we had a lot of possession and territory, so credit to Marlborough because they defended really well.

“They were together and they didn’t give up and they played so well, but in the first-half we were very good.

“We’re showing some form even if it didn’t show on the scoreboard and any win at Marlborough is to be celebrated because it’s a tough place to go and they are a very good team.”

This weekend, Blues host second-place Oxford Harlequins at Monks Lane in what is expected to be a good game with both sides fighting for promotion.

“It’s a massive game, they have been going really well and they’ll be coming into it will plenty of confidence.

“We just have to concentrate on ourselves because we’re hitting form as well and it will be a great game because it’s two teams who play in a similar vein.

“Hopefully we can keep our performances going and continue forward because we can blow the top of the table wide open with a win.”

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