OXFORDSHIRE fell to a 27-21 bonus-point defeat at the hands of Warwickshire in their Pool 1 opener at Rugby.

Craig Burrows’ side were undone by a mistake-ridden ten-minute period in the first half of the County Championship Shield clash.

However, they could not have started better as Ed Yeats crossed on five minutes. George Lewis converted.

The hosts replied almost immediately with a try of their own and another two scores in quick succession gave them a commanding lead.

Replacement Adam Neal drove over for Oxon on 45 minutes and Lewis added the extras.

But Warwickshire further stretched their lead when they crossed again.

Oxon piled on the pressure in the last 15 minutes, with the hosts losing two players to the sin-bin for a high tackle and persistent offside.

The visitors made the extra men count as Ian Jeffries was pushed over and Lewis converted.

Oxon looked for another score, but an early shove at a scrum gave Warwickshire a free-kick, allowing them to relieve pressure.

Ethan Wookey (2), Elliott Brown and David Melville crossed for the home side, while Huw Thomas kicked two conversions and a penalty.

Oxon will look to bounce back against Buckinghamshire, who beat Essex 20-8, at Banbury on Saturday.