Launceston tour to Camberley ends season on a high
The All Blacks put in a huge performance to put high quality opposition under pressure. Second half comeback produces best rugby of the season and shows real spirit
The final game for this season's Launceston u15s was played on tour at Camberley rfc in Surrey.
It's hard not to be impressed by the Camberley set up, pristine pitches looking even better in the blazing sunshine and huge numbers of really well drilled players.
That said, it was all Lanson for the first 5 minutes, the boys pinned Camberley back against their own line, forcing them to kick away possession and running it straight back in, unfortunately, Lanson couldn't convert the pressure into points and Camberley began to settle into their systems, eventually breaking down the resolute Cornish defence to go 5-0.
Throughout the first half the story was the same, Camberley looking to release their rangy strike runners and if they did grab half a yard, they capitalised, scoring two more tries and a penalty in quick succession, leaving Lanson staring at 20-0 deficit.
The all blacks then grabbed a bit of possession of their own and from a well worked line out, they sent the ball through the hands of the backs, finding George Mill had timed his run to perfection and he finished well, to make it 20-7.
The next score was crucial and it was Camberley's, in the same corner, for 27-7 at half-time.
The second half got underway and Camberley looked to shut up shop, they'd been dominant at scrum time however and it was from the back of a forward driving scrum that Camberley scored their final points of the match, stretching their lead to 34-7.
The mark of this Lanson side is that they're never going to roll over though and now the boys started to press, Nicky Crighton was simply outstanding today, he spearheaded most of the all black attacks, taking the ball to the line and delaying the pass perfectly, kicks in behind, everything done at pace, he was a nightmare for the defence.
It was Launceston's turn to pile on some pressure now, Adam Howgill had done the dirty work in the mauls and tackles all game and he got his reward with a clean break out of the contact, stretched his legs, held onto the offload till the last second, found Ben Webb who went over for 34-12.
It was all Lanson now, great work at the breakdown from Josh Elias and Billy Martin working like extra flankers, winning their side penalties, which was giving Launceston territory with some monster kicks from Josh Bakehouse and Sam Jago. The Launceston carriers were making big gains, Jack Goodman, Kieran Bainbridge and Josh Elias all taking it on really hard, with the Lanson pressure came a series of penalties, Sam Jago put a lovely touch finder right in the corner and after the All black forwards went through a solid series of pick and drives, Freddie Ward busted over to end the scoring, 34-17.
A great performance from Launceston, against quality opposition.
And so endeth a fairly disjointed season for the Launceston u15s, well done lads, for sticking at it and putting some great performances in, especially towards the end. Many thanks to Camberley, who looked after us incredibly well, the perfect hosts and mostly, a massive thank you to Andy "7 pints" Crighton and Adrian Martin, for all their hard work.
by Rich Stiles