Fettes Rugby Tournament 02/11/2016
It was a glorious Wednesday afternoon that had been given over to the annual Fettes U9 Rugby tournament. There was a slight chill in the air, and the grass was cut short, which in my opinion are some of the best running rugby conditions.
We arrived promptly at 12:30 and began our half an hour warm up, long before any of the other schools arrived, including Fettes themselves!
St Mary’s were placed into group 2 alongside Compass and Loretto, whilst the other two groups hosted squads from Belhaven, Cargilfield, Ardvrek, Craigclowan, Clifton Hall and Fettes.
We had previously played Compass and Loretto, in earlier fixtures towards the beginning of term so were comfortable going into our group stage. Both fixtures went well, and we came away with a 7-0 and 5-0 win respectively. Tackles were consistent, as was our breakdown play and running ability.
After winning our pool stage, we moved into the 1st place group play-offs, this was the real test. As I had predicted we were up against Belhaven and Cargilfield. Cargilfield we knew, but Belhaven were an unknown capability thus far.
First off, we faced Belhaven in what proved to be our hardest game of the day, a team who played an equally physical game who also boasted strong runners, yet our boys were slicker at the break down allowing us to narrowly punch through the robust Belhaven defence and score two tries to nil.
Finally, we faced off against Cargilfield. Everything hinged upon this moment. We have been training towards this day for months, with focus on effecting the break downs, tackling well and supporting runners. We did everything here by the book, every single boy on that pitch played an outstanding game of high impact rugby, so much so, we played to the width, allowing three tries to come through from Ollie and Josh, our solid and reliable Captain.
Furthermore, our defence and break down ability was so slick and structured, Tristan, Nick, Ewan, Isaac and John all contributed here incredibly well.
Securing ball and playing it out wide, with some very healthy running. The Cargilfield boys played a quality game themselves utilising their big impact players to make good yards into our red zone, yet our defence held with some cracking try saving tackles. The final score was 3-0 St Mary’s, winners of the Fettes U9 Rugby tournament.
Cargilfield have beaten us comfortably over the past year and a half in rugby, however on Wednesday we brought that winning streak to an end through some fabulous rugby. I could not be a prouder man of the boys who played that day. The effort we have all put into training to achieve this goal has been met at last and I look forward to locking horns with Cargilfield and Belhaven in future fixtures.
The fixtures in summary:
St Mary’s 7- Compass 0
St Mary’s 5 - Loretto 0
St Mary’s 2 – Belhaven 0
St Mary’s 3 – Cargilfield 0
A final huge thanks to all parents who came to watch, your support was most welcome and appreciated.
Jules Birdsall, 03/11/2016