We came in to todays away fixture at Ormskirk RFC off the back of last weekends fine victory over Sedgley Park. But in truth Ormskirk are a different proposition altogether having beaten Eccles twice last season including a 41 – 19 Blacksticks Quarter Final (22 point spread). Eccles would need to be at their best to compete today.
Following some overnight weather reminiscent of summertime in Manchester the pitch was subjected to a 9:00am, 9:15am and finally a 10:30am inspection to ensure the game could be played safely. It may have been touch and go but the match was given the thumbs up to go ahead.
Bucking the trend Eccles started brightly and were forcing Ormskirk to defend inside their own 22 right from the off. It seemed inevitable that Eccles would score soon and score they did with a fine run from the powerful Ed H who ran through the Ormskirk lines to score in the corner.
Eccles extended their lead further with a second try scored by Shea directly under the posts. Matthew W easily converted and the Eccles lads all grabbed themselves a chair, a glass of brandy and a slim panetella whilst they patted one another on the back for a job well done. Game over!
With the toot of the referees half time whistle imminent, Eccles were huffing and puffing and trailing by five points following three tries from Ormskirk; one of which came from an extremely dubious moment after a clearly offside Ormskirk 12 broke the Eccles attack down and second try which was gift wrapped in festive Eccles Christmas paper – and it’s only November!
Eccles began to pile on the pressure as they had done pre-courvoisier and Ormskirk were clearly relieved to have the ball in hand and be able to hoof it in to touch to close out the first half.
Half Time 17 – 12
Eccles started the second half just as they had started the first. They were fast, powerful and aggressive. Once the second half had settled down Coach Kevin began to rotate his team around firstly bringing off Josh G for Matty L – now imagine you’re in the Ormskirk Front Row and you’ve been given a beasting from Josh G, you see him being taken off and you think “thank £#€k for that”, then you see Matty L jogging towards you and your heart sinks because you know you’re in for more of the same. Happy Days!!
Ross A and James F came on during the second half too, both making an immediate impact with their tough tackling and powerful running. I can just imagine the player facing up to James F for the first time. He looks at James’ legs, looks at his own arms, looks back at James’ legs, again he looks at his arms and wonders how he is expected to get his arms anywhere near wrapping around those tree trunks on the end of James feet.
David S came on in the second half and put in his usual 110%. How he manages to get those little legs moving so quickly is a mystery of science that Alan Turing would baulk at solving. Deceptively quick, David made a number of penetrative runs through the Ormskirk defence, each time taking two or three lads to bring him down – most notably for the final try of the game.
Eccles totally dominated the second half, running in five converted tries whilst only conceding one. Alex H put in a phenomenal performance today scoring twice in a twenty minute spell of mind-blowing rugby from Eccles. Matt W found himself on the list of try scorers with a brilliant individual run across the field and down the wing before placing the ball down behind the line.
Dan A capped off his first class display at Hooker with a second half try, flinging himself across the try line when it looked like the move was about to break down. The scoring was closed out with a second try from last weeks double EMoM winner and Eccles Centre Shea S. The move didn’t start well with a loose pass from Joey Eccles in the Line-Out and a similarly loose pass from Dan Gogh but David S got hands on the ball and made the ground up with a charging run at the Ormskirk defence. Ormskirk would regroup but Eccles would be relentless in their bid for another try. The ball would be recycled time after time at the Ruck before the ball would land in the Shea S breadbasket out on the right flank. Capitulation from the Ormskirk defence would see Shea run in and close the game out in style and put Eccles ahead by 25 points.
Full Time 22 – 47
Its a new adventure for the lads next week as we welcome visitors from the far end of the East Lanc’s, Liverpool Collegiate RFC. Liverpool have a long history of developing good teams and the team the lads will face on Sunday had some great results at U15 level including wins against Rochdale, Ashton, Blackburn and Vale of Lune. Eccles will need to be on their game if they are etc extend their winning run to a third match
Eccles U16’s Vital Statistics
Todays Eccles Squad
- Josh G– Loose Head Prop
- Dan A – Hooker
- Ellis P – Tight-Head Prop
- Oliver W– Second Row
- James W – Second Row
- Joe R – Blind-Side Flanker
- Albert T– Open-Side Flanker
- Alex H – Number Eight
- Harry C – Scrum-Half
- Matt W – Fly Half (Captain)
- Jack W– Left Wing
- Ed H– Outside Centre
- Shea S – Inside Centre
- Max R – Right Wing
- Brad P – Full-Back
U16 is a difficult age group for rugby clubs with many clubs struggling to field a team (neither Ashton nor West Park could fulfil their recent fixtures against Eccles) as their lads drift away in to other interests. It is a fantastic reflection of the coaches, parents and players of Eccles RFC that we have in excess of 20 regular players all fighting for a place in the starting line-up. So as they say down the gym “what can you bench? With three players MIA Eccles can still bench around 250Kg
Bench Strength – Matty L, David S, James F, Ross A, Alex T
- Coach James
- Tanny K
- Rob S
- Kieron R
Scores on the Doors
- Half Time 17 – 12
- Full Time 22 – 47
Shea S – 2 tries
Matt W – 1 try
Alex H – 2 Try
Dan A – 1 Try
Ed H – 1 Try
Matt W x 6
Eccles Men of the Match
Players Choice – Dan A
Dan Gogh is an influencer of the game. When Dan plays well, Eccles play well. He can play pretty much any position on the field and for the second week in succession he has bagged himself an EMoM with his quick thinking, fast hands and powerful running. Brilliant Dan and shhhhh!!
Coach Choice – Alex H
Quite often when I ask Coach Kevin for his EMoM there is a bit of umming and areing, “well so and so had a good game, but then so did whats his name”. This week only two words were uttered (other than “why the £#k is the bar closed?) Alex H. Well done Alex, a well deserved accolade for a great performance.
Parents Choice – Alex H
Alex started last weeks game to rivals (rivals lol!) Sedgley Park from the bench. Maybe it was this that got him fired up, maybe its his diet of raw meat and sugar puffs; whatever it is clearly works wonders because Alex put in a fabulous performance at 8 today scoring two tremendous tries along the way.
As well as his double EMoM today Alex H showed nimble feet as he dropped a shoulder and skipped past the hapless defensive line before being felled like a giant redwood just short of the line.
The more the Locks resemble substantial columns, towers of strength, the better. The BOGOF lads James and Oliver W epitomised this today providing the power and balance to help manoeuvre the scrum and guiding the ball smoothly through to the rear of the scrum for Harry C at scrum half. Both lads demonstrated themselves to be mobile, skilful, agile, towers of strength.
In fact the Eccles scrum was imperious today, winning all their own and most of the oppositions scrums too. But it didn’t stop there as the Eccles line out too was totally dominant with Dan Gogh on the ball and Joey Eccles in the air only losing out a couple of times to a very strong Ormskirk line.
The Ormskirk number10. This lad showed great character and leadership when it briefly looked like the game might spill over in to a bit of Charlestown Chiefs vs The Patriots. He wasn’t the Ormskirk captain but he picked up the mantle whilst the two team captains were being spoken to by the referee; pulling his team mates away from a possible handbags and demanding that they concentrate on the game and not get drawn in to nor instigate anything outside the game in hand. This is something we have seen on a number of occasions from our own Ellis P who has calmed down more fights than Mills B Lane
That sausage sandwich today was dreadful, there was more bread in the sausage than was wrapped around it. 0/10
The bar was shut. I’ll repeat that one for you THE BAR WAS NOT OPEN!
The changing room sausage!
Sometimes it can be a real chore to do a match report, today wasn’t one of those days, it has been a joy writing this one up. There will be mistakes in every report as I try to balance out watching the game, watching my lad, taking photos etc. Without doubt the thing that keeps me going on a report on one of those chore moments is the lovely comments from the Eccles parents. Singling out Leeann today for the conversation we had today regarding her friend in hospital who enjoyed reading last weeks report – which was a massive chore despite the win. Also thanks to Mark Skillicorn, my dodgy camerawork always seems to find Shea S scoring
For those who are unfamiliar with the Charlestown Chiefs vs The Patriots moment