Match report from Greeno (Vice-Chairman)
Warm summer sunshine embraced the southern fields of Hampshire last Saturday.
With perfect white fluffy clouds offering some relief from the warm sunshine, the scene was set for a new chapter in Puma history. The challenge for the day was Stoneham RFC the old enemy just off Junction 5 of the M27.
New season, new coaching setup, formed fromed the very DNA of this club, Pumas coaching Pumas. Pre-season has gone well so it was time to unleash a Club team onto the paddock.
The game would consist of 4 x 20 min quarters with opportunities for changes and fluid intake.
First impressions on arrival gave the feeling of a very focused and enthused Squad that seemed ready to go. Stoneham I believe were slightly light on numbers so Pumas were offered to them, a theme that continued thought the match ensuring good game time for all.
Leading the team was Joel Stocker as newly appointed 1XV captain and JC 1XV vice-captain. Encouraging to see so many new faces in Puma colours, mixed in with familiar guys from many a previous season.
Did I mention enthused… well that set the tone for the early moments of the game, maybe too enthused at times though, leading to several knock-ons and dropped balls.
First run out of the season should we expect this? Absolutely it’s all part of preparing both club sides for the long season ahead…longer for the Squirrels! Slowly the Pumas became more consistent in what they were tying achieve and although not always prefect in execution their efforts started to reflect on the score board.
Always difficult to maintain consistency when so many changes take place throughout the game, but the Pumas handled this well and continued throughout the first half to run in tries against Stoneham.
The Second half provided more of the same with Pumas scoring good team and some individual tries against a Stoneham side that began to fade in the last of the summer heat.
Lots of positives to take from the day and lots to work on which I’m sure the coaches will discuss, and work on in training this week. No real injuries to report.
So with a final score of 70-13 to the Pumas… a good first run out for the season.
There is currently a great feeling running throughout the Squad, this was clearly on display Saturday. Lots of energy, lots of passion, feeling of togetherness, and Puma pride. Lots of people are still away on holiday and more to come into the fold, so lots up for grabs in the coming weeks.
Big thankyou to Roy Coombes for stepping in last minute to Ref the game.
Now we prepare for the 1st 2XV merit league fixture at Home that will offer a much harder challenge.