Well, after completing the second of two games in two days I can confirm that by six o’clock on Sunday night all the squad is now in bed snoring away with a smile on their face, and no, it is not wind. Having to play the best two sides in our league over two days and win both is no mean feat. Eleven of yesterday’s team also played today but it was due to all today’s squad that we scraped through against a very strong Aspull side. The Aspull side was strengthened since our league meeting a few weeks ago with some of their vets who still are very good players.
We started the game very positively and within two minutes having won good quick ruck ball in the Aspull 22 the ball was moved left from Nkosi to the KOB on to Declan’s brother to Jamie TS and he put James Cooley
in at the corner. This time James using the large dead ball area was able to run round under the posts to score; 7-0.
This only seemed to inspire Aspull who then through some rolling mauls and good off-loading got to our 22 and from a resulting scrum went blind. It seemed we had them tackled but the wing escaped to score; 7-7. This lifted Aspull and they continued to trouble us and with some poor tacking they scored a second try; 7-14. At this stage we lost Anton to a shoulder injury so we had to make changes with Jamie TS moving to centre. Cesaire to full back and Ged the feather moving to the wing. Just before half-time Aspull pressed again but good defence this time kept them out. Half-time; 7-14. Bish at this stage had to leave the field as he had tickets for the Liverpool game. Dave Bonsa took his place.
We started the second half well and pressed for the equalising try and after 10 minutes it eventually came. A poor clearance kick came to Cesaire 40 metres out and he ran back at Aspull with some good stepping went through a number of tackles to score; 14-14. Not to be outdone back came Aspull and from a ruck close to our line one of their forwards broke our defensive line to score; 14-21.
The next try was going to be a vital one and fortunately we scored it with some good hands down the blind with Barts and Shack moving the ball into the middle, ruck won, ball moved right for Jamie TS to break tackles to go over the try line and to make the conversion easier passed to Ben OB to go under the posts; 21-21. We then lost Steve Millington to a calf injury so Yonner moved up to prop (can you believe it – for the team he said) and Casual Bill came on, at the same time Saturday’s two try hero James Ellis
replaced James Cooley
. We then scored a really good try with good hands between the forwards featuring Barts, Ged the feather backed up by Ben OB and finished off by Nkosi when he stretched out just far enough to reach the try line; 28-21. By now the extra fitness training was starting to tell (‘what fitness training?’ you might ask, but we did get sronger and more organized).
We then lost Nkosi to a shoulder injury but that 5th team superstar or leg end Franco arrived as the final sub. This breathed extra confidence into Aspull but fortunately we scored again with Jamie TS chipping over and between himself and Ben OB somehow the ball arrived in Shack’s hands. Now, as we know, anything can happen, but fortunately he ran for the try line and even though he could have got closer to the posts he thought to himself I have enough abuse from KOB so I will put the ball down immediately and test his kicking attributes. Fortunately KOB was up to the challenge and converted; 35-21.
Aspull kept trying and with the final play of the game almost scored in the corner only to be stopped by a great tackle from Cesaire on the left winger. Final score; 35-21.
Just time for a couple of beers and straight home to bed. A special thanks to Andrew the referee who tried to keep the game flowing. Also I would like to thank the people and players who supported us and the number of players who offered their services if we were short. Finally to all the players who made up a good squad who have played over the last two days a special thankyou and by the time you read this report you may be starting to het over the aches and pains. Thank you also to the number of texts wishing us all the best before the game and congratulations after the game. Too many to individually mention. So on to the quarter final on Saturday against Littleboro. It is now time for me to go to bed as well.