Blues win promotion
Newbury Blues are promoted to National 3 SW after beating Clevedon RFC in the play off
NEWBURY BLUES 25 v 22 CLEVEDON
Blues win promotion
Saturday 29th April, South West 2nd Place play off, 3pm KO
Newbury Blues are promoted to National 3 SW after beating Clevedon RFC in the play off
Blues coaches have to again make some hard decisions for this play off match day squad but have an extra player to add as for this game 4 subs are permitted Toby Pearce coming onto the bench for Josh Bartlett, Kyle DOEL returning and Rob DRYSDALE coming in for Paul Sayers
Blues welcomed Clevedon to Monks lane for this 2nd place play off game on a cloudy but dry Saturday afternoon in front of a huge crowd; this is the first time these clubs have ever met
Blues run out with a large contingent of mascots from the Newbury RFC minis, hopefully in a few years many will be running out for the senior teams.
Clevedon kick off this vital game, Blues gather and immediately run back at Clevedon and are rewarded with a penalty just short of halfway, Blues kick is carried by the wind and doesn’t find touch allowing Clevedon to clear to touch from inside their own 22, Blues win the lineout but throw away the ball allowing Clevedon to get possession then they win a scrum, the scrum is reset then Clevedon win a free kick. Clevedon run the ball getting into Blues half before they are tackled into touch, Blues win the lineout and put up a high kick, a great chase and tackle by Alex MILLAR puts a Clevedon foot in touch, lineout won Blues forwards try to shove forwards but don’t make much ground so the ball is fed out to the backs and a good Josh LOVE run is halted with a high tackle and a Newbury penalty. Blues kick to touch, win the lineout and attack the Clevedon defence winning a penalty scrum, from the scrum Blues spend several phases camped in Clevedon’s 22 before they spread the ball wide; a long pass from Graham STEWART reaches Josh LOVE who scores, the ref brings play back as the long pass is adjudged to have crept forwards for a Blues penalty which drifts just wide.
Clevedon take the 22 drop out, Blues gather and run but don’t get far before they spill the ball forward in the tackle, Clevedon win the scrum and a penalty which they kick to the touch line, the wind holds the ball in field and it rolls over the dead ball line bringing play back for a Blues scrum, Blues pack holds firm and from the scrum Blues run before Joe PIGOTT puts up a high kick, a wicked bounce for the Clevedon defender means the ball drops to Jamie FUTCHER and he out runs the Clevedon defender over the final 25m his last gasp tap tackle just misses and Jamie FUTCHER is over to score under the posts, Dan THORNE converts, 7-0 14 mins
Clevedon restart, Blues catch and run back at Clevedon before sending a high kick well into the Clevedon half, Clevedon gather and spread the ball through their backs hands running back at Blues, Clevedon spill the ball in the tackle allowing Blues to run out of their own half Dan THORNE to Toby THORNE to Jamie FUTCHER who takes the tackle, Blues keep the ball live and win a penalty which Dan THORNE slots between the posts, 10-0 18 mins
Clevedon restart Blues take and return the kick and chase but a late tackle on the Clevedon kicker means they have a penalty in Blues half where the ball has landed, Clevedon kick to touch win their lineout and put pressure on the Blues defence through several phase’s and manage to score and convert, 10-7 22 mins
Blues restart and a good chase means Blues are quickly there and a good tackle puts Clevedon under pressure, Blues manage to rob the ball through Alex MILLAR and attack through several phases before they get a penalty for a high tackle on Josh LOVE, the ref deciding a penalty is enough, Dan THORNE kicks the points 13-7 24 mins
Blues have the lion’s share of possession and attack Clevedon straight from the kick off winning a penalty scrum, Blues attack from the scrum before putting up a kick a good chase from Cameron Golby Barr and a great steal means Blues regain possession and attack Clevedon, a high tackle on Rob DRYSDALE gives Blues a penalty and earns Clevedon a yellow, the penalty kick is just wide.
Clevedon take the 22 drop out, Blues catch and run the ball back at Clevedon, Blues put some good phases of play together and get up to Clevedon’s 22, Blues keep up this pressure and earn a penalty which Dan THORNE kicks 16-7 33 mins
Blues are now playing the better rugby and from Clevedon’s restart kick run straight back at them making good ground and getting well into Clevedon’s half, the pressure tells and they win another penalty which Dan THORNE kicks 19-7 36 mins
Ollie SPANSWICK on Kyle DOEL off
Clevedon restart Blues return the kick, Clevedon gather and run back at Blues winning a penalty, which they kick to touch in Blues half, lineout won they get up to Blues 22, Clevedon spread the ball wide but get tackled into touch. Blues win the lineout and kick out of defence, a good Blues chase puts Clevedon under pressure and they lose possession-allowing Blues to attack but a forward pass halts their progress. Clevedon win their scrum and kick to touch, Blues lineout is not straight so Clevedon have a scrum, they win a penalty at the scrum, which is kicked to touch in Blues half, lineout won Clevedon mount an attack but a mistake brings the final whistle.
Blues now need a second half performance the same as their first to win this game and promotion, Blues kick off the second half Clevedon run the ball back and win a scrum on half way, from the scrum Clevedon who seem to have come out for the second half fired up, attack the Blues getting into Blues 22, Blues have to defend through several phases but eventually the Clevedon pressure tells and they quickly spread the ball wide to round the Blues defence to score, the long conversion successful, 19-14 43 mins
Blues need to respond to this early setback and they do, from Blues kick off Clevedon return the kick, Blues gather and some good running rugby takes them into Clevedon’s half before the backs release Cameron Golby Barr who is down the touchline into Clevedon’s 22, his inside pass is snaffled by Clevedon and they kick out of defence to release the pressure. Blues run back at Clevedon but a mistake in the tackle means Clevedon have the ball and after a few phase’s they kick to touch, Blues win the lineout and put up a high kick a good chase forces Clevedon to put a foot in touch, lineout won Blues keep up the pressure getting into Clevedon’s 22 and spread the ball wide but cannot quite break through to score, eventually the Blues pressure forces the mistake from the Clevedon defence and they have a penalty which Dan THORNE slots between the posts, 22-14 50 mins
The first quarter of the second half has been very even, Blues return the Clevedon restart kick and it rolls nicely into touch, Blues manage to steal the lineout and run at Clevedon winning a penalty at the tackle, which they kick to touch, lineout won Blues attack but a knock on halts their progress
Ben HICKS on Graham STEWART off
Clevedon win their scrum and make good ground winning another scrum, again they attack but a forward pass gives Blues a scrum, Blues hold their scrum and kick up field, Clevedon take and run before a neat cross field kick is taken by their winger, Blues just manage to halt him but infringe at the tackle giving Clevedon a penalty, the shot at the posts is just wide on 57 mins
Blues take the 22-drop out, Clevedon take and a good kick rolls into touch in Blues 22.
Ryan DAVIS on Dylan STEWART off 58 mins
Blues win the lineout but under pressure they knock on giving Clevedon an attacking scrum in Blues 22, Clevedon win the scrum and put Blues under pressure, Blues defence just holds out and when Clevedon look like scoring a certain try they knock on, Blues win the 5m scrum and clear to touch, Blues steal the lineout and after the forwards have made some ground Blues clear a bit further up field with a good kick to touch. Clevedon win the lineout and launch another attack getting well into Blues half before winning a penalty and Blues getting a team yellow, Clevedon slot the penalty through the posts, 22-17 64 mins
Clevedon are back into this game their second half performance far better than their first, Blues need to try and disrupt Clevedon, Blues restart kick is returned by Clevedon, Blues gather and try running the ball getting into Clevedon’s half before a neat grubber kick rolls just to quick over the dead ball line just in front of the chasing Blues players so play is back for a Clevedon scrum. Blues pack manage to overturn the scrum Alex MILLAR to Joe PIGOTT he releases the centre partnership of Dan THORNE and Josh LOVE who passes to Jamie FUTCHER who is tackled into touch in Clevedon’s 22. Clevedon win the lineout and try running out of defence but get tackled into touch, Blues win the lineout and now have another good attacking chance to score, Blues run at Clevedon and after several phases are awarded a penalty when Clevedon infringe, Dan THORNE steps up and slots the kick over, Blues are back in front and Clevedon need to score twice, 25 –17 72 mins
Clevedon manage to re-gather their restart kick and put Blues under pressure, Blues regroup and steal the ball in the tackle, they try running out of defence before they put up a good kick, the Blues chase is good and under pressure Clevedon kick, Blues take and run the ball winning a scrum at the tackle
Toby Pearce on Joe PIGOTT off, Toby THORNE moves to scrum half 74 mins
Blues get shoved back in the scrum but it is reset, this time Clevedon manage to steal the ball at the scrum and run the ball, Blues steal the ball in the tackle but illegally so Clevedon have the penalty and they kick to touch, lineout won their forwards pick and drive before they spread the ball wide but a knock on gives Blues a scrum and a chance to relieve the pressure. Blues win the scrum and kick clear to touch, Clevedon win the lineout and run at Blues but they spill the ball, Blues play the advantage, first they run then kick, the kick is charged down so back for the original Clevedon knock on just in Blues 22. Blues win a penalty at the scrum, which Dan THORNE kicks to touch just in their own half giving Blues a breather after being penned in defence for several minutes. Blues don’t help their selves or their supporters when the throw is crooked giving Clevedon a scrum and the chance to put Blues under more pressure, Blues know they only have a couple of minutes to hold out and Clevedon have to score twice
Clevedon win the scrum and attack across the pitch winning a penalty, which they tap and go again spreading the ball wide making good ground before they change direction and bring the ball back, time is running out for them but they have the last score when a couple of quick passes allows their winger to score wide out in the left corner, the conversion is wide and the final whistle is blown, 25-22 Full Time !!!!
Blues have won the play off and got promotion back to the National leagues what a great day.
Commiserations to the Clevedon squad and their travelling supporters who just missed out but more than helped make this a great game of Rugby, good luck to you next season
Thanks to the ref and his assistants who looked after and kept control of this game making it the great game it turned out
Supporters, coaches and players are all on the pitch celebrating a great result for this young squad its been a long time since such a day 12 years, What an end to a great season a nail biting end to the match which finishes with such joy for Newbury RFC
The Champagne corks pop and the players and supporters applaud each other and the photographs are taken to record the moment, a great memory for all
Forwards MOM Alex MILLAR, one of his most dynamic games, he seemed to be everywhere
Backs MOM captain Dan THORNE, who led by example and drove the squad to this victory also kicking 20 points 6 P and 1 C
What a way to end a great season for Newbury RFC, the Stags getting promotion to BBO Div 1 and the Blues promotion to Nat 3 SW
! A big Well Done to the Coaches and Players a great and successful season!
Graham STEWART, Rob DRYSDALE, James MACAULEY, Jon BASTABLE, Kyle DOEL, Rory JONES,
Dylan STEWART, Alex MILLAR, Joe PIGOTT, Nick WACKWITZ, Jamie FUTCHER, Josh LOVE,
Dan THORNE, Cameron Golby Barr, Toby THORNE,
Ben HICKS, Ollie SPANSWICK, Ryan DAVIS, Toby Pearce
Lee Goodall, Bob Ward, Paul Archer, Sam Czerpak, Ed Richardson
Dulcie Patten, Daniel Elsigood, Martin Paice, Amy Davis
Special thanks to Dave Shields for his sterling work as the Newbury RFC touch judge through out the season, travelling to the away matches as well
Thanks to the great Newbury crowd who turned out in force to cheer on the Blues in this play off match, today was probably one of Blues biggest crowds
A special thanks to Ian Jack who has taken some great photos of the Blues matches over the season, and Alex Drysdale for his photo’s, Thanks for sharing your photos on the website they are much appreciated by players and supporters providing some great memories