Eccles Squad; Ollie Danniel Bailey Finn Ben Jonnie Jake Sohan Ethan Alfie
With two Bailey’s and two Ben’s representing their respective sides; this is likely to be a report where yours truly may miss the thread and remain a little confused… rather like the refferee’s performance on sunday!
With a few regular players missing from the line-up, it was all-to-do against a well organised Tyldesley. After finally ‘selecting’ a suitable playing surface, both sets of coaches agreed on a plan to let the boys enjoy an all-out attacking game, with maximum advantages being given.
After their Capt Liam lost the toss at kick-off, it was Eccles who went the attack first. What came next signalled the intentions of both teams as the Eccles wave was stopped in its tracks and saw the ball spilt for a counter attack. Tyldesley’s speedy Ben finishing neatly in the corner 1-0.
From the restart, Bailey took the pop pass from Danniel to charge up the middle and pull in the ‘Bongs’ defence. Jonnie, playing as scrum half in a tactical change, followed Bailey into the contact to feed Ollie. You all know what comes next….. Ollie glides towards the right wing where Ethan is loitering. Ethan now knows if he sticks on Ollies shoulder, he’ll likely get the ball he’s hoping for. Ollie just managed to ‘slip the pill’ to Ethan who accelearated like a Porsche to make the line. 1-1
Up came the powerful Liam for the visitors. Their Captain showed his team mates which direction they should head with a great surging run that saw him shake two tacklers. Showing good spatial awareness to avoid the touch-line, Liam grabbed his first of two tries on the day. 2-1.
The advantage was always going to be with the attacking side, and the tackle count was given little consideration to encourage both teams. After numerous phases (not unlike the Welsh at weekend!) by Tyldesley, it was only ever going to be a mistake or a dropped ball that would see possesion handed over. An unfortunate foot into touch relieved the Eccles defence close to their line. Jonnie again fed Bailey from the restart, before Alfie and Jake got involved in the middle. Ollie took the pass from Jake and managed a powerful sweeping run to bring the scores level. This was how the game ebbed and flowed. Tries being exchanged, full bloodied tackling and great recycling…. all played in a wonderful spirit with a tremendous attitude. For once, it was a pleasure to officiate! However, at this point I have to confess that I lost track of the scoreline…. such was the intensity of the game and the committment from all the players that the focus was on keeping it flowing.
Jonnie thrived in his new role and enjoyed his personnal battle with Tyldesley’s Ben! Sohan is relishing the contact in the middle of the park now with some lovely ‘carries’. Captain Ollie again grabbed a hat-trick and came off the field bruised and bloodied. Our flying wingers Ben and Ethan really put the gloss on things when we get the ball to them. Both boys finshing with a couple of tries each. Finn presented some great body angles into the tackle, as well as showing what soft hands he has, as he looked to off-load from the contact area. Danniel, time and again proved he has an eye to put our support runners into the gaps and Jake was his usual ‘Jack-Russel’ self, being a constant nuiscance to the opposition! Alfie always forced his opposite number to go round him as he stood strong in the tackle.
We do have some things to put right in the next training session though; such as our ball retention and looking to give the early pass to shift the point of attack. The tackling was great from both teams, but again, as we tire, this is where the mistakes creep in.
We have had some fantastic evenly balanced games this season and this was probablly the pick. Thanks to Phil from Tyldesley and well done to his boys! A credit to you and the club.
No idea what the score-line was I’m afraid! All I know, it was a great day for playing rugby and these boys didn’t let themselves or the watching parents down at all!
Well done to you all, and here’s to the return fixtures next season!
Comedy Gems from Sunday; The motor-cade of vehicles exiting the car park after realising they were at the wrong club = Dutty: Mr Angry! / The selection ‘process’ on deciding which playing surface to mark out a pitch / All the other Eccles’ coaches I spotted in Asda buying ’emergency’ Mothers Day flowers!!
Training this Sunday; 22nd March. 10.30am. All welcomme… including new players!