LOU Burgham scored four tries as Reading Abbey Nuns continued to set the early pace in Championship South West Two after securing a dominant 43-5 victory over Teddington, writes Fiona Tomas.

Annette Tomas and Abi Wall also touched down as the Nuns proved too strong for the London side, who were one of the early trailblazing clubs in the women’s game.

The first half saw the Nuns dominate, with Tomas opening proceedings after intuitive play from scrum half Ellie Rice, who switched the direction of play.

Burgham grabbed her first of the afternoon after impressively working a chip-and-chase, before adding another within minutes from the restart after intercepting the ball in midfield.

Wall – returning to centre for the first time this season – scored her third try in two games to complement a strong defensive performance.

The University of Reading graduate crossed after Teddington were penalised for an infringement on Burgham – and the Berkshire outfit had the bonus point in the bag by half-time with another chip-and-chase by Tomas, as Teddington’s defensive line faded.

But the hosts – one of the earliest women’s rugby clubs in England – had the final say before the break, capitalising on a moment of indecision from Abbey after a penalty and charging over to score.

But the hosts – who were established some 25 years after Teddington – proved age is all but a number as they continued the second half in the same demeanour they had begun the first.

Implementing a much more tactical game plan, Tomas and Burgham dictated the game while Amy Wilson and Natalie Bow posed constant dangerous threats in attack.

And the fiery Burgham completed her hat-trick by chasing another Tomas kick, before adding an impressive fourth.

Huge hits from Natalie Mitchell and Jess Potter lead to a turnover ball at a scrum and forward Molly Wells recycled quickly to feed Burgham, who clinically finished.

The result sees Abbey climb to the top of the table, ahead of Wimbledon Ladies and local rivals Newbury Ladies on points difference.

  • READING Abbey men will be looking to return to winning ways in Southern Counties North when they travel to Buckingham on Saturday (3pm).

Abbey lost to Aylesbury 34-31 last time out.