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Under 12

Whitchurch 0 - Sandbach 42

Sun 20 February 2005

We arrived at Whitchurch in glorious sunshine and what looked to be a fabulous day, until that was you actually got out of the car and realised that although sunny the wind chill factor was about -25……..god it was cold!! The pitch was still a tad on the frozen side so we had the opportunity to have an extended training session before the first match.

Sandbach kicked off high and deep into the Whitchurch 22m, their centre failed to catch the ball cleanly from the kick, he then picked up the ball only to be carried over his own try line by Smith and forced to touch it down. 5m scrum to Sandbach, first phase saw Smith go over for the first score, converted by Gross. A quick first try can make a team think it is going to be easy, however the Scorpions kept their concentration and following sustained forward pressure Wardle pounced from the back of a ruck to score the second of the day, converted by Gross.

Sandbach played the game in the opposition half and kept them under pressure, winning a lineout on the Whitchurch 22m line. Smith elected to call the new lineout move which was executed well and from phase one saw Robinson go over for the try of the day, converted by Gross.

Half time saw the Scorpions well in control, however, the coaches asked the players to use the always available overlap more in the second half. One change saw Blagbrough replace Benson on the wing. The players listened, immediately moved the ball wide and Allen scored in the corner, converted by Gross.

The second half was much more of the same with Whitchurch having some good passages of play but never really looking like scoring against the solid Sandbach defence. Holbrook was introduced as hooker who came off the bench to play well. Two more scores from Sandbach to finish off what was a good clinical performance.

The Scorpions were:- Hurlstone-Johnson, Benson (Blagbrough), Gross, Smith, Allen, Robinson, Moore, Barton, Cooper (Holbrook), Wardle, Standring, Bordill

Whitchurch ‘B’ 31 v Scorpions ‘B’ 5

Whitchurch only made 4 changes to their 1st team. Sandbach kicked off and immediately showed that they were confident to keep picking and going through the forwards and for the first 2 or 3 minutes of the game put Whitchurch under pressure. Unfortunately they did not convert this in the points and Whitchurch then broke away to run the length of the pitch for the opening score. Immediately the Sandbach heads went down and before they knew it they had conceded another try.

However, 12 points down at half time and there did seem to be a chance of The Scorpions clawing it back. But as soon as the second half started quite the opposite occurred, heads were down, tackling was none existence and with minutes Whitchurch had scored two more. But then the Sandbach forwards sprang into life, following a good passage of play got awarded a lineout 5m from the Whitchurch try line, a good throw from Holbrook saw Holdcroft take a clean catch and the forwards powered him over the line for what it must be said was a fine piece of catch and drive play (Yes Mike, you would have enjoyed it!!)

After such a good start to the match I must admit it was a bit of an anticlimax, this group of players must match their concentration and commitment to tackle of the first few minutes and find a way of taking this through an entire match and I am sure the results will start to come.

Sandbach Scorpions were, Muldoon, Workman, Jackson, Sharpe, Escourt, Blagbrough, Benson (Moore), Thompson, Holdcroft, Holdbrook, Mason, Sayles

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