Under 14's EG -v- Pulborough
U14s coast to opening win of the season 38–12 versus Pulborough
5/11/2017. U14s coast to opening win of the season 38–12 versus Pulborough.
The U14s opening waterfall (league) match for 2017 was against Pulborough, a side that we hadn’t faced in competition for at least a couple of years, so we really had no idea what to expect.
The sun was out, the grass was short, and there was an air of anticipation for what was to come.
The game started fiercely with both sides seeking to gain the upper hand. The rucks were tight with neither side willing to concede an inch.
The ball emerged and nice passing from the half backs, Cameron MacInnes and Reuben Luxton, put Eoin O’Donoghue and Colm Geraghty into the sort of space which they thrive in for an opening try. Colm knocked over the conversion for 7 – 0.
A nice pick up from Jon Jon Smith led to a punch through their defence before the backs again swiftly moved the ball through the hands to Colm who sought out the 2 on 1 with the winger, timing the pass perfectly for James Bull to cruise into the corner. 12 – 0 and still only early into the game.
The fast flowing play however did not last as the forwards started to pick and go too frequently from the rucks. The ball has to be secured first and we started to lose dominance at the breakdown which became more 50/50. We pressed hard but handling errors, forced passes, dropped balls etc caused our play to become stuttered. However individually we had more strength and size than the opposition so chances did present themselves with Colm and Owen Peel adding to the score-line.
Half time: 24 – 0
Pulborough started the second half as strongly as they did the first as they pushed up back into our own 22. We pushed back and gained the upper hand, scoring after another powerful run from Jack Morrison, tacking the score to 31 – 0.
We switched off a bit, understandable with the score as it was, and Pulborough pounced. Fast breaks from their backs and too many missed tackles resulted in two tries being conceded, one in particular was a real beauty as the Pulborough forwards created a huge gap in our defence to score in the corner to well-deserved cheers from the whole crowd. It could have been worse except for Eoin O’Donoghue who hunted down tackling opportunities like a bull shark during a feeding frenzy.
These two quick tries being conceded caused us to raise our game for the final few minutes which culminated in a perfectly weighted fly hack through their defence by Owen Peel who dived on the ball in the try area for the last score of the game.
It was a relatively cohesive performance with good interplay, some excellent offloads from the forwards, powerful running by Jon Jon and Elliott Vincent and nice distribution by Reuben at fly-half which gave us good structure in the backs.
Final score: 38 – 12.