Winnington Park R.F.C.

Winnington Park R.F.C.

Poor start sees Park exit the Cup

by Simon Bytheway

Park conceded two converted tries in the first five minutes to effectively seal their fate against a strong Wilmslow side.

Park's under 13s came away disappointed from Wilmslow on Sunday after losing a match they could have won.

In truth Wilmslow deserved their win, but there was very little to choose between the two sides after the first 10 minutes.

We were awful at the start. This is something that has happened to us constantly for the last 2 seasons, we are just incredibly slow out of the blocks; if any Sports Psychologists out there can help the coaches in this, we are open to suggestions!!

On Sunday we weren't helped by having a very make shift back line. Already missing 2 stand offs due to injury and a school trip, the coaches' plans were further disrupted by the news that our inside centre had been injured playing for his school on Saturday, meaning a very late change of plans. Well done to all the boys who stepped in and played in new positions.

So 14-0 down after 5 minutes, how would Park respond? Very well is the answer.

Matthew Hand showed great determination in disrupting a Wilmslow lineout, chasing his own fly hack and dropping on the ball over the line. Unfortunately this was in the corner giving Ross a near impossible kick in the windy conditions. That he even got it close was a great effort.

Wilmslow then scored a try of their own right on half time.

19-5 at the break.

Park roared into action in the second half, unsettling the hosts with the ferocity of their forward play.

First Olly, then Matthew again scored out wide bringing the score back to 19-15. At this point it was game on and the next score would prove vital.

Unfortunately it was Wilmslow who got it. Their big Number 8 who had a strong game and who was their "go to" player all day, crashed through a couple of tacklers to get the ball down in the corner. Park heads dropped a bit and Wilmslow quickly scored again out wide.

Park rallied themselves and Aidan won a line out and dragged 3 defenders over the line with him for a great score. However it was too late and Wilmslow ran out 34-20 winners.

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Plenty of positives for us. The line out was superb. Sam's throwing was spot on all day in very difficult conditions, meaning we won all our own ball. We also disrupted their line out very effectively, which meant that despite having a big height advantage, they didn't get as much clean ball as they would have liked. Our scrum was also very good against a much bigger pack.

A downside for the forwards is that they were much less efective in the rucks and mauls; too slow to get there and not aggresive enough when they did arrive.

Credit to the backs also, particularly in defence, with a special mention for Milo for felling the Number 8 with an incredibly brave hit in the first half.


Tries - Matthew Hand 2, Olly Ayre, Aidan Wilkinson


Jacob Highett, Sam Bytheway(captain), James Norman, James Metcalfe, Callum Harrison, Luke Critchley, Olly Ayre, Matthew Hand, Ross Hodgkinson, Finlay Quinn, Toby Lawrence, Josh Roche, James Longshaw, Milo Wilkinson, George Barron, Matty Thomas, Aidan Wilkinson, Max Taylor, Liam Capper, Charlie McKay.


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