U12 Reading RFC 20 - 50 Marlborough RFC
U12 start 2019 with a flyer
Reading hosted Marlborough today in a three match series. Marlborough pushed aside a slightly flat end to 2018 with a promising performance today against a large club with talent and physicality. Reading chose to field three teams in succession whilst Marlborough rotated their players in all three matches.
The first game started poorly. Confusion and poor hands were punished by the hosts scoring twice within minutes of the start. Reading put a great deal of pressure on our defence for much of the first half and Marlborough struggled to take control of the ball. Harry stopped a certain third try with an excellent tackle as it looked like the hosts were gaining momentum. But slowly, Marlborough fought their way back into the game challenging well at the ruck and recycling ball. However, the Reading defence were organised and Marlborough struggled to gain territory. The second half improved as James L and Matthew N found a little space. As Marlborough's defensive line started to click they forced a knock on. Matthew N took the ball blind from the base of the scrum and scored a well earned scrum-half opportunist try. Two tries to one was the final score of game one.
The second game was a big improvement. Rucking was good and Marlborough took control from the start. This time Harry was able to build pace with space and Freddie and OJ were effective muscling their way up the middle of the pitch. James F proved a nuisance for the hosts with good work around the fringes. Archie T, Tom and Jack were tenacious in loose play. The ruck looked solid and we managed to set up good second phase possession. Marlborough won this game three tries to two and whilst the score looked tight, the visitors were really in control, Harry scoring two tries and OJ one. Sadly Freddie picked up an injury to the shin and played no further part.
Marlborough stamped their authority on the third and final game of the morning playing with intelligence and style. Whilst overlaps were not exploited as they should have been, the direct runs were effective. Harry found his top gear with pace and agility that seemed to mesmerise the Reading defence. He added another three tries to his tally and OJ two. Final score six tries to nil.
Clearly the training has helped reshape the team. Whilst there's a long way to go our defensive line did finally put pressure on the opposition. Individual skills are clearly developing throughout the team and I'm sure the boys will have enjoyed today as much as their parents. Midweek training should accelerate this and, finger crossed, keep the momentum going.