A good day for Rugby..
Report by M Elliott
OB’s 57 South Woodham 7 (match stopped just after half time with score at 50-0 )
After the heat and rain the third match of the season saw perfect rugby conditions bright and crisp at the always friendly and welcoming South Woodham Ferrers. Opening exchanges saw excellent tackling on both sides as the teams probed each other’s defensive lines. It was soon apparent that OB’s had the upper hand within the forwards as moves practiced on the training ground were used to good effect. Pods of forwards taking the ball into contact setting the platform giving Beaty the option of releasing the backs or feeding another forward runner to suck in defenders or gain field position. This allowed OB’s to move steadily down the field resulting in an opening try for the forwards through Bidwell his first of this season converted by Paulin.
South Woodham reset and kicked long into the OB’s half at the restart forcing our boys to set a good platform and build phases retaining the ball. The OB’s forwards again set the platform recycling ball setting up runners and giving the OB back line a strong attacking platform moving the ball into the South Woodham 22. A second try followed for OB’s flanker Stringer who used his pace to surprise the defence and score his first try for the club. The OB’s backs decided they also needed to get some points on the board and Sagomba scored twice in quick succession through powerful direct running with Paulin adding one conversion
South Woodham continued to stick to their task pushing back hard at the OB defence and showed good awareness to kick behind the OB line to relieve pressure or gain territory. OB’s continued to secure the ball with Morely at full back showing his pace and positional awareness on several occasions. Despite South Woodhams tackling and willingness to compete at the breakdown, OB’s pack secured two more scores through Cottage and Griffin with Sagomba and Paulin converting. Paulin added one further score before half time and to show forwards can also kick Griffin converted.
One of the great elements of rugby is the spirit in which it is played and the level of sportsmanship and respect often on display. The second half was played very much in that spirit of sportsmanship and respect, the goal being to challenge South Woodham to play their game while facing an active opposition. This saw South Woodham score a well deserved and well worked try spreading the ball well through the hands and creating an overlap. OB’s had two scores of their own through Walker converted Paulin, and Paulin himself adding a final score as the match ended. Winning is always good but the way you secure that win can also be important and the team as a whole responded well to the challenges they were set. It was great to see how the boys continue to develop as a team and respond to training and coaching they receive.
We would like to thank the referee for ensuring all the boys had a great match and South Woodham for their great hospitality. The South Woodham team showed great strength of character and determination throughout the match.