NLD U16s v Warwickshire U16s Report
Wednesday 22nd October 2014 Broadstreet RFC
WarwichshireU16s 10 – 24 NLD U16s
Last Wednesday this season’s NLD U16 squad took to the field for the first time in the opening county championship encounter with Warwickshire U16’s. A fantastic setting and pitch at Broadstreet RFC welcomed players and parents all keen to see how the boys would fair.
NLD began like they meant business and were intent on showing an attacking style instilled by coaches Brian Dobb and Matt Albinson during training. Following a couple of strong runs from wing Liam McStay, NLD found they were matching up well in the wide open spaces and forcing Warwickshire to concede penalties. From one penalty taken quickly by James Thomas at scrum half the ball was fed wide and full back Andy Brown was on the end to score a deserved try. The conversion from Elliot Adamson narrowly failed.
As is the nature of these games, Warwickshire came straight back at NLD using territory well and competing hard at the ruck, and they drew level within 5 minutes as they worked some space on the left flank for a well taken try in the corner. The difficult conversion from wide out was missed.
The remainder of the half saw NLD press further but unable to break a well organised Warwickshire defence which was holding up under great pressure.
The message at half time was simple to carry on at the same tempo and the scores would come, particularly as the coaches were using the bench to full effect to freshen things up.
The second half began with a bang as NLD pressed again. They were soon at the Warwickshire line and it was Jack Dickinson, the sole player remaining from last season’s squad, who crashed through players and showed what a years’ experience was worth. This time Adamson was successful with the conversion and NLD were good value for the 5-12 lead.
Yet again Warwickshire came straight back at NLD and camped themselves in the visitors 22. Determined and steely defence kept them at bay, but at times this was adjudged to be illegal and try scorer Dickinson was sent to the sin bin for a team offence. Unfortunately the referee at this point was unaware of the rule punishing only the player and not the team in these matches and with NLD trying to swap a player on Warwickshire took full advantage and their scrum half raced in for the try. The conversion again failed.
Back up to 15, NLD were looking for more out of the game. Keeping strictly to the game plan was paying dividends, and almost immediately after his return to the field, it was Dickinson again who made the most of the openings and scored his second of the night. With the conversion from Adamson slotted NLD had some breathing space on the spirited and talented Warwickshire side.
Warwickshire to a man were determined to finish on a high and kept playing phase after phase. The NLD defence was good and kept the home side pinned in their own 22 waiting for an error. Eventually it came and the ball was worked wide to the right with where Mark Hendy finished at the corner. The conversion this time failed, but NLD were really good value for a great 10-24 victory.
This was a tremendous performance against a very good Warwickshire side with every member of the squad contributing something meaningful to the game. Both coaches were extremely happy with what the boys achieved.
Next the squad move on to play East Midlands at Bromsgrove RFC in Super Sunday 1 on Sunday November 2nd.