Big learnings & Mixed results at Reading RFC festival U13s
Abbey U13s win one and lose two, but improved performance by all
U13s took part in a 'round-robin' tournament at Reading RFC - other teams were Reading A; Gensians A and Coventry. Abbey brought a large squad of 21 boys. Matches were 2x15min format.
Game 1 : 1-2 vs Reading A - the hosts brought their best team. Abbey quickly got into a rhythm with strong rucking and fast hands creating a few overlap opportunities, a mixture of wrong decisions or sloppy hands meant that this advantage wasn't converted. But Abbey managed to convert one opportunity with Flynn scoring a long range try. Reading then drew level after some missed tackles by Abbey's defensive line - leading to half-time 1-1. The second half continued with some missed opportunities from Abbey. Reading made Abbey pay for this with another strong run and missed tackles by the defensive line.
Game 2 : 0-2 vs Coventry - Abbey's opponents were a larger side - with some fast/strong individuals. This provided the Abbey boys with a great opportunity to learn about playing without the ball - backs to the wall - defending bravely in the first half. It was 0-0 at the turn. In the second half, Abbey's defence finally succumbed to a long range try and close range crash by their largest player. Testament to the Abbey boys, as they bounced back to push Coventry back on their line for the last quarter, unlucky not to score - a forward pass denying Alex R from an expansive back move. An impressive stubborn/defensive performance.
Game 3 : 2-0 vs Gensians A - Gensians had beaten both Reading & Coventry going into this match - so Abbey team knew they'd have to be at their best to get a result. The coaches decided to keep changes to halftime only - so one team in first half and another in the second. Abbey started from the kick-off with aggressive rucking and expansive backplay, which led to a forward 'bingo' try by Jake. A 1-0 half-time lead. For the second half, the team changes meant that Abbey fielded a lightweight pack, which paid dividends with swift aggressive rucking that stretched an already tiring Gensians pack. A swift steal in the breakdown on the wing and quick-thinking by 'Goose' led to a second try. Gensians didn't get a look-in and the match ended with an emphatic 2-0 victory. The Gensians coach simply said 'your boys wanted it more'. Well played by all the boys.
All in all a great learning for the boys and the coaches
Front row : Matty / Luke / Joey / Daniel
Locks / No8 : Archie / Alex B / Josh S / Josh B / Toby-Joe / Jake
Scrum half : Ollie E / Henry
Flyhalf : Angus
Centres : Flynn / Kel / Joe
Wings : Oscar / Josh G / Jasper / Alex R
Full Backs : Olly P
Season’s try scorers to-date
Ollie E 1