U11A Rugby vs Merchiston Castle
Wednesday 20th March
1) Effective line speed.
2) Straight line defence. = COMMUNICATION and GETTING SET EARLY
3) Width and depth.
The above display -for me- underpins U11 rugby. These factors combined with a sound grasp of basic skills and fast ball will lead to strong wins, and yesterday the boys met these standards and exceeded them.
We had the kick off, and straight away our speed and passing ability was displayed, with the ball being shipped effectively to the left wing, Ollie scored a beautiful try on the basis of backing himself in a footrace against the opposition wing. Throughout the first half the lads played a free flowing style of rugby where passing to the width in attack, supplemented by strong support and rucking presented us with many opportunities for trys. Lochie, carved up with his razor sharp footwork, Henry sniped a screamer from a ruck in the opposition gold zone and Josh and John’s great vision and support allowed them to nip in under the posts. Ewan managed to bag himself a belter as well, showing off his every improving footwork and agility. The Merchiston boys put up a spirited defence and played some neat fluid rugby, but the line speed of our boys was effective in putting their ball players under pressure, which resulted in a few unfortunate knock-ons.
The second half was a gutsy affair and Merchiston came back on the offensive, with grit and determination. They attacked well and scored three healthy tries from robust phase play and wide ball. Not to be put off, we came back in full form and Henry stepped his way to the try line, widening the gap. Furthermore, Tom was not to be left out on the scoresheet and held his width well to create a beautiful two on one opportunity and score in the corner. Josh also pinched a second, running effectively the full length of the pitch to touch down under the posts – some boy!
Tristan led from the front as always, putting his body on the line and making fantastic yards. As did the big fella’s Isaac and Fergus, our key ball carriers, fearless and punchy, their impact was felt across the board. And finally, Hector, Nic and Blair had a great outing, they worked their socks off and displayed their razzle dazzle and hardiness, taking on boys far larger than themselves in attack and defence.
Yesterday, the boys did exactly as I asked and we came away with a well-deserved win. But most importantly, it showed the strength and depth available in our entire squad, where all the boys step up to the plate and work for each other – I couldn’t have been a prouder man.
Thanks to all the boys for their hard work and fighting spirit and all the parents who came to watch.
Finally, a big thanks to the Merchiston lads and Mr Gilmore for their punchy and positive attitude throughout the day. Well done, lads.
Mr JI Brown
Marnie Harvey, 23/03/2019