Luton collapse to third heavy away loss despite bright start

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Luton’s first XV suffered their third heavy defeat of the season away from home, 43-3 at Old Priorians on Saturday.

Another beautiful afternoon promised a fast game, and so it proved. Luton start off brightly enough, winning three penalties in the first 10 minutes, but were only able to convert one into points.

Strong forward pressure by Luton were held off by an excellent OPs defence on at least two occasions in the first half.

OPs always looked dangerous on the attack, with their speedy backs a threat. Just three attacks led to three converted tries. A yellow card to Davies (hands in the ruck) in the 39th minute saw OPs wrapping up the first half with a penalty to lead 24-3.

Within a minute of the second half starting, OPs’ lock also saw a yellow card (stamping) so we were 14 a side for the next eight minutes. Normal service resumed for OPs with the restoration to full strength as they ran in three more tries (two converted).

That makes it five league defeats so far - and it doesn’t get any easier as next up is leaders Brentwood at home on Saturday.

Luton: Robert Povey; Cas Abaka, Ryan Doyle, Aiden Kenny, Scott Aspinall; Rick Hobbs, Thomas Mahendran; Alex Gabbidon, Wayne Hempson, Thomas Garner, Sean Meddeman, Ryan Staff, Adam Harris, Gareth Jahn, Matthew Yang. Replacements: Ryan Sheppard, Jonathan Kerr, Christopher Davies.

Luton seconds went down 40-5 at home in the league to Ampthill IIIs, while Luton IIIs won 12-7 in a friendly at Bedford Swifts II.