Bourne are the 2017 NLD (Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Derbyshire Rugby Football Union) Vase Champions.
Dave Maudsley’s side returned to Bourne in triumph after cruising past Midlands Five East (North) runners-up Keyworth, outscoring them four tries to none.
After a nervous start, Bourne were gifted the opening try when centre Sam Thornburn intercepted a Keyworth pass and ran 70 metres to score.
However, Sam Evison missed a straightforward conversion attempt which Keyworth looked like taking advantage of when their pack came close to bullying their way over the Bourne try line.
But the defence held firm and Keyworth’s only reward was a 50-metre penalty from fly-half Connor Mee.
Half-time came at the right time for Bourne after a 20-metre penalty miss by full-back Jack Berry showed how the pre-match favourites were making heavy weather of justifying the odds.
Maudsley had time to emphasise to his side how important it was to go one better than last season when they missed out on NLD Vase success with an agonising 22-20 loss to Stamford College Old Boys at Sleaford.
Kicking downfield and into the wind was the recipe for Bourne to dominate as Josh Lynch capitalised on good position by Rob Bentley to increase Bourne’s lead from 5-3 to 12-3 after an Evison conversion.
But the final was far from over as, firstly, Thornburn went off with an injured ankle and then Keyworth almost broke through with Mee, only for substitute winger Donald Sweeting to produce a superb try-saving tackle.
Evison then kicked a difficult penalty to give Bourne breathing space before Sweeting effectively won the match with a burst of pace to dive in at the corner, Evison missing the chance to convert.
However, Bourne put the icing on the cake after Evison missed a tough penalty chance when Bentley finished off a Jack Berry run.
Another Evison conversion miss proved to be of no consequence as Bourne saw out the game to bring some silverware back to Milking Nook Drove ready for the club’s End of Season Fundraiser next Saturday.
BOURNE: Wheeler, Appleby, Gill, Rushton, Mabey, Hiscocks, Binns, Lindley; Evison, Dixon (Capt), Bentley, Harby, S. Thornburn, Lynch, Berry. Subs: Sleight, Smith, Keast, H. Thornburn, Sweeting, Charlton, Lagdon.
SCORERS: Bourne Tries; S. Thornburn, Lynch, Sweeting, Bentley.
Keyworth Penalty: Mee.
Bourne Man of the Match: Josh Lynch - a try and some crucial tackles won coach Maudsley’s vote.
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