Richmond produced an excellent second half performance, scoring five unanswered tries, to romp to a 51-10 victory over Bishop's Stortford.

Leading 20-10 against a gritty Bishop’s Stortford side, league leaders Richmond pressed the accelerator in the last twenty minutes to run away with another important victory.

The five league points earned preserve a three point lead over Rams, whilst Rosslyn Park are now seven points behind after losing away to Plymouth.

The game was a landmark for hooker Ross Grimstone, celebrating his 100th first team appearance with a typically industrious performance, which earned him the player of the match award.

In front of a crowd of 882, with conditions suited to running rugby, Richmond enjoyed early ball to threaten the visitors’ 22.

However, when the ball was lost, fullback Nick Hankin immediately countered, making good ground on a diagonal run.

The move was continued by Josh Stannard and wing Chris Smith, who just outpaced the Richmond cover to get behind the home defence.

The move was half stopped ten metres out, but the support was quickly in place and the play was finished under the posts by George Cullen, son of old Richmond captain John.

The fly half added the conversion, and, after just four minutes, Stortford were leading 0-7.

The lead lasted two minutes.

The visitors were penalised thirty metres out, Charlie Mulchrone tapped and ran and Louis Lynagh, reading the game well, was quickly up on his shoulder to accelerate to the line.

Tom Hodgson added the first of five conversions.

With Stortford having a nightmare afternoon in the lineout, Richmond continued to monopolise possession.

When Hodgson kicked to fifteen metres, the home pack showed their strength at the scrum, winning a penalty under the posts. This was converted by Hodgson to take the lead.

The visitors added to their woes by conceding four successive penalties, allowing Richmond to work their way to within five metres.

Referee Nick Wood, the former Gloucester prop, played advantage and, when the ball was spun out to the backs, Cameron Mitchell forced his way over.

With a ten point lead after 21 minutes, Richmond looked poised to take full control of the game but it was now their turn to concede penalties.

From the fourth in succession, Cullen converted a penalty in front to cut the lead to 17-10. Richmond had further chances in the first half, including a five metre lineout but they were frustrated by small errors and a hard working Stortford defence.

Ten minutes into the second half, Richmond earned a scrum penalty five metres out, but they were then in turn pushed off the ball, as they set up to drive over.

Given another opportunity after 55 minutes, skipper Mitchell opted for the kick at goal and Hodgson obliged.

With play remaining scrappy, it was not until the 61st minute that Richmond established a decisive lead.

The outstanding Mulchrone was the catalyst, finding space with a clean break before offloading delightfully to the lively Tom Pashley who in turn gave a scoring pass to Jesse Liston.

With the substitutes now perfectly timed to add momentum, Richmond lifted their game and a tiring Stortford side had no answer.

Now getting quick ball, Richmond soon added the fourth try when Jamie Gibbs, in fine form, looped round the defence to find Lynagh, alert again, in support to complete the try.

Three tries were added in the last eight minutes as the league leaders ran from deep.

Callum Torpey scored the fifth try from a five metre line out drive and the sixth followed in the 77th minute.

Lynagh started the move with a powerful and direct run, before the ball was moved quickly through multiple hands, the front row contributing well.

The handling and passing was now error free and the team looked full of confidence. The returning Ronnie McLean deservedly completed the move.

Finally, with the visitors down to fourteen men, after a yellow card for Tom Lewis, Richmond went past fifty points with a second try for skipper Mitchell in the final minute after a fine break by Hodgson.

The fly half then added an excellent conversion to take his tally to sixteen and his team past fifty points.

Director of Rugby Steve Hill said post-match: “I am really pleased with today’s performance. It took a long time to break down the persistent Stortford defence but we showed good patience and in the end they could not deal with our pace and power. Our scores in the last ten minutes were excellent and we will go into next Saturday’s match at Cinderford with a good amount of confidence.”

Tickets are now on sale for Richmond’s next home fixture against Rotherham Titans on Saturday 8th February (KO 2:30pm).