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Oxford Rallies to Beat Cambridge 26-19 in Rugby’s Varsity Match

Oxford University rallied to defeat Cambridge University 26-19 in rugby union’s 131st Varsity Match, giving the Dark Blues their third straight win in the annual game.

Sam Egerton, Jamie Harris and Charlie Marr had second-half tries as Oxford scored the final 20 points to erase a 19-6 deficit at Twickenham Stadium in London.

Marr also kicked five points, and Cassian Bramham-Law booted a pair of penalties, as the Dark Blues overcame losing captain John Carter to a first-half injury.

“Absolute grit from the boys,” Egerton, who was named Man of the Match, told Sky Sports. “It’s about those 23 boys, we just pulled together.”

Andy Murdoch scored a try for Cambridge and Rob Stephen kicked 14 points. The Light Blues lead the series 61 to 56, with 14 draws.

Stephen booted three penalties in the opening 17 minutes to give Cambridge a 9-0 lead. After Bramham-Law kicked a pair of penalties for Oxford, Murdoch went over and Stephen converted to give Cambridge a 16-6 halftime lead.

The Light Blues increased their advantage to 19-6 three minutes after the restart on Stephen’s fourth penalty. Egerton then started the Oxford comeback by spinning away from a defender to touch down in the 51st minute, though Bramham-Law missed his conversion.

Harris went over 10 minutes later to draw Oxford within three points. The Dark Blues then took a 23-19 lead in the 68th minute when Egerton offloaded the ball to Marr, who went over next to the post and converted the try.

Marr then closed the scoring and clinched the victory with a penalty in the 78th minute.

“At halftime, I think most people thought we were out of it,” Oxford coach James Wade said. “The effort and worth the boys put in in that second half, it was pretty incredible.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Bob Bensch in London at bbensch@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Elser at celser@bloomberg.net.

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