Wensleydale U15's Narrow Win Over The Mighty Redcar
First victory of the season
Wensleydale travelled the longish distance to Redcar (thank you for all parents getting everyone there on time) but had only 12 starting players with King Louis, Kieran, Joel all having the dreaded lurgy and Henning having a sore foot – hope you are all on the mend for next Sunday.
In bright sunny and windy conditions Wensleydale kicked off with the wind at our backs. Almost immediately we were on the front foot and with Ben playing in the inside centre position he rucked brilliantly to give Wensleydale an early opportunity. We capitalized with a darting run from Aaron evading several challenges to put the ball into the corner for try number one. Wensleydale sensed blood and almost immediately we ran the ball forward from the resulting kick off, with a penalty we then opted to scrum and; as per usual we dominated winning the ball. After some fine rucking and interplay Stanners was at the end of a great move and ran over from 20 yards to put Wensleydale 10 – 0 ahead. However, I can only describe what was then a ‘Chuckle Brothers’ performance the boys allowing the opposition to run in two very easy tries to peg the score back.
Once again, we relied on Jez. He ran 60 metres with an outstanding individual try. From the resulting kick off Keane made an excellent catch and drove forward before off-loading to Jez who decided to go on another brilliant individual run and score under the posts. Wensleydale being Wensleydale decided to sleepwalk into allowing the opposition to peg back another try just before half time.
After the break Ben punched a hole through the Redcar defense after some great teamwork with rucking and passing to score giving Wensleydale advantage. After an injury to Aaron (who look like he won’t be playing classical piano any time soon – hope your wrist is better), we then started to tire. We allowed the opposition to run in three (yes you read it correctly) tries to give Redcar the lead. Far too much selfish play hindered the teams progress. At times we did link up well and finally we put together a fluid move allowing Ben to revel in his centre position creating general havoc breaking through several tackles and proving far too strong for the opposition to score under the posts. We then solidified our dominance when Danny scored with a determined run after some great (boogie woogie) running from Wilson to score in the right-hand corner, but nothing is easy with our boys and we once again fell asleep allowing Redcar to capitalize on our tiredness tying things up at 43 – 43. With one last effort from the kick off the boys put in one more massive effort and, on a difficult day performance wise we won the ruck and put together a few passes before Stanners picked up and darted towards the corner, with Redcar in hot pursuit he managed to open up a bit more and crash into the corner. With several fine conversions from Jez from distance and angles – we managed to clamber to a 43 – 50 victory.
The negatives were numerous today, after going two tries up we seemed to think this would be a ‘walk in the park’ and under estimated an opposition who although small tackled bravely and had some very quick players. Instead of the boys exuding confidence and throwing the ball around to capitalize on our dominance we took the selfish routes most of the time and for the most part it failed. We crashed forward when we should have passed wide, we had white line fever when there were loads of options elsewhere and we forgot about our defensive duties whilst underestimating a smaller but very fast opposition. Sorry for the harshness in my assessment.
We did have positives, when we decided to play as a team we put together some great rugby which the opposition found difficult to live with, our scrumming won everything even against the head. Also, a big credit to the 12 boys who had to cover a full pitch without any substitutes – it is very easy to shout from the touchline but to cover a full pitch for 60 minutes with 12 and then 11 players is no easy task. We showed great character to snatch the victory with one last monumental effort right at the end. You all deserve to put your feet up and have a rest after that effort.
I forgot to ask for a ‘Parents MOTM’ so I’ll just point out a few stand out performances, Jez was Jez, Ben reveled at centre, punching some big holes in the opposition defense, Dan was very strong today and scored at a critical period of the game and Jacko grows in confidence with some good runs and rucks and did a catch of the season from the kick off off-loading a pass which we consequently dropped!
Funniest event of the game was Jake crashing over to score a try before he dropped it….cutting him some slack apparently he touched it down and an opposition player kicked it out of his hands…….Danny verified events but this didn’t stop me from berating him for an hour on the journey home!
Thank you to our hosts Redcar who had 12 brave souls out there today and put in an excellent performance with some talented players.
Have a safe and fun week at school, big test next week let us try and get everyone to Cawhill Park for Sunday and let’s put in a great team performance. Song for the week, To Me to You Bruv by The Chuckle Brothers - The Tinchey Stryder version is an excellent remix - highly recommended.
Final thanks to Jim and George for their ongoing support of the boys, we can see how far they have come under your supervision.