Mini’s Piece (U10 update):
The London Scottish U10s have had busy start to the season learning lots of new skills around rucking, mauling, ripping and uncontested scrums. The first three training sessions were all based on tactical and development training followed by lots of game time.
Last week we visited Teddington RFC to test out our new skills. It was great to see the boys and girls from both clubs going through their training together, but most importantly, in such a friendly and jovial manner! At the end of the sessions we played against each other and had one rotating Barbarians team.
This sets us up nicely for the Richmond Development Festival this Sunday, followed by our own London Scottish Minis Festival on the 13th October.
David Deakin – Head Coach, U10s
Junior Piece (U13 update):
On Sunday 29th September, London Scottish U13s travelled to Ruislip RFC to play Ruislip B team in their first Herts Middlesex Junior League Match. A fabulous day for rugby with temperatures in the mid-teens, mostly dry but with a damp and softer pitch from a night of continuous rain.
The 14 boys, enough to field a full team and one sub, started the morning at 10:15 with a warm up and some training under the direction of our new Head Coach Juliette Shorey and our other coaches.
Kick off was at 11:05 with Scottish receiving. A solid catch by Jackson got us underway, which was followed by a couple of quick passes before the ball landed in the hands of Axel, our Number Eight and match Captain. He made a strong run up the far side before he placed the ball down for our first try with just 25 seconds on the clock.
In the ensuing passage of play, our Scrum Half Ben, got the pass out to George at Fly Half, who passed it down the line, where it eventually arrived in the safe hands of Josef, playing Left Wing. Josef got it over the line in the bottom left corner to build on our lead with his first of four tries in the match.
After some good rugby by both sides and several turnovers, Lucas was able to get possession and touch the ball down at the 8 minute mark. Alfie then subbed on for Oli at Prop and made a strong impression in his inaugural match in the Scottish jersey. He started with a brilliant tackle that created a turnover to Scottish that set up the phases which lead to Oscar driving through the defence to bring the score to 4-0. Jackson provided an encore with his determined moves past several defenders before placing the ball down under the posts.
Some great passing, rucking and support play ensued with Cesare, Josh, Alban, Max and Oli playing their positions well and helping to build momentum. This solid teamwork led to Josef’s 2nd try in the half which was quickly followed by Owen’s strong effort for the 7th try just before the whistle for half time.
The second half saw more determination on defence from the Ruislip side but not enough to slow Jackson, whose piston-like legs propelled him through defenders for about 20 meters where he offloaded to Oscar and the ball eventually made it to Max and then to Ben to finish that phase over the goal line in the far right corner.
Lucas at Fullback caught the re-start kick and gained ground and momentum before passing the ball out to Alban who also made excellent progress up the centre of the field before the ball landed in Jackson’s hands and was placed over the line for the 9th try of the day.
Several battles back and forth made for an exciting match and, after several great plays by the Scottish side, they had gained enough ground and Josef was able to bring the ball down over the goal line one more time.
There was some great rugby played for the next 13 minutes with both teams trying to build momentum and capitalise on the few opportunities that came up. Our boys were making some great runs and solid tackles followed by determined rucks and a strong desire to continue to control the ball. Lucas notably added some excellent tackles and defensive pressure in the midst of a sea of very good players on the Scottish side. Some movement in the positions saw Lucas switch his Fullback role with George who had been at Fly Half and Alban went out to the Wing.
Some excellent passing down the line, outside the Ruislip 10 meter line, in the 48th minute, saw the ball move from Ben through the hands of Lucas, Oli, Oscar and onto Joseph who put it over the line in the corner.
Despite the score line, Scottish had to really push and fight for their tries, particularly in the second half when they scored about half as many as in the first 25 minutes of play.
With so many excellent plays and strong performances today, it was hard to distinguish one player over others, however a decision had to be made and Juliette announced Lucas as the Player of the Match.
This group of Scottish U13s worked exceptionally hard and very well together as a team. Each one of them should be proud of their performance and hold their head high with pride after their strong showing and convincing outcome.
Scott Gregory – U13’s Lead Coach
Sunday saw the first league game of the season for the U16s against Hertford following 2 mixed outings pre-season. Hertford is always a close game. We had played them away in division 3 of the league as U14s and again in division 2 as U15s. Both very close games with London Scottish taking the honours in the dying minutes of both games by one three points respectively. Hertford had come with two scores to settle and at half time it looked like job done with our U16s down 0-19
80% of the first half had been played in the London Scottish half. Any incursions into the Hertford end had been met with some fantastic kicking from the opposition. That together with strong decisive running and strength in the breakdown from the visitors had forced a string of penalties awarded against us. One converted try, 3 converted penalties, 3 Scottish line-outs in our territory lost and one spectacular drop goal added up to 19 points.
The only positives that could be taken was some superb defence from the Scots much in their own 22, a good performance from full-back Ollie under the high ball and some great defensive play from James B on the wing.
After an excellent half time talk from Neil Macfarlane and some inspired substitutions by Jon Knowles the boys went out for the second half and produced a performance that can only be described as day-vs-night. In contrast to the first half the game was played almost exclusively in Hertford’s territory kicking off with a fabulous (but unconverted) try down the wing from Barnaby W. Another converted try from Scottish saw the score at 12-19 to Hertford.
A bonus point loss after the half time result seemed almost too good to be true. Then, in a rare incursion into the Scottish half, a cross field kick was taken by the Hertford wing on the edge of touch and a try scored 24-12 to Hertford. Hertford failed to convert but our bonus had gone. But the LS U16s were not finished as another converted try regained our bonus point: 24-19 to Hertford. Then in the last play of the game, and consistent with results in the last two years, Scottish went through the phases to score another try 24-24. The ground went quiet as Barnaby S. took the kick from far out on touch. A difficult kick and a great effort saw the ball fly oh so close with good length.
Too much to ask and perhaps an unfair result to the opposition Nonetheless we came away with a well-earned bonus point draw as for the third year in a row against Hertford our U16s snatched a result from the jaws of defeat.
Particular mentions to winger Ben F.(for his hat trick in the second half!), to JT for making the difference in the backs in the second half and to Sam LF, Max D. and Jacob E. (hooker, No. 8 and open-side flanker respectively) each for doing the work of two throughout both halves.
Ralph Eley – U16’s Coach
The London Scottish Community Programme have been out making their presence felt in a number of local schools again this week.
First up, on Saturday 21st September, prior to the Cornish Pirates fixture, members of the London Scottish Girl’s section and community team attended local secondary school Grey Court taking part in an impressive event called SportsFest. The event allowed pupils of all ages to try out sports both old and new as well as allowing the girl’s section to raise their profile. Thank you to all who stopped by and we hope to see you down at the Athletic Ground soon.
Next up, on Friday 27th September, members of the community team and amateur sections attended Latchmere School in Kingston to continue to strengthen links with the school. The Cairnhill passing cage attracted a number of young rugby hopefuls who were keen to impress with their passing skills. Thank you to all who came to say hello and we look forward to working with all at Latchemere again this academic year.
With a number of exciting community events running in the next couple of week, please do keep an eye on the website and indeed next week’s edition for more information.
Should you be interested in learning more about how you can get involved with the London Scottish Community Programme then please do contact Rugby Director, Ross Peacock firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ross Peacock – Rugby Director