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Junior Match Reports – Sunday 16th Dec

Junior Match Reports – Sunday 16th Dec

It was a busy weekend for our Junior section this past weekend in the lead up to Christmas with most of the teams playing fixtures. Read how our Junior sides faired in their match ups in the match reports below written by some of their coaches.

It was a busy weekend for our Junior section this past weekend in the lead up to Christmas with most of the teams playing fixtures. Read how our Junior sides faired in their match ups in the match reports below written by some of their coaches.

Under 12s – written by Colin Adams

MPU

London Scottish Under 12s contested Round 2 of the Middlesex Championships on Sunday at Chiswick with their best performances of the season so far. The matches were played on a newly laid Astroturf pitch in sunny weather, so conditions could not have been better.

The first match was against Ealing. London Scottish gradually found their rhythm, working a combination of both individual and collective team tries at a steady rate. The match finished 8 tries to 2 in favour of London Scottish, which was a fantastic result and a great way to start the morning!

The second match was against hosts Chiswick, and was a much tighter affair. The teams were very evenly matched, and the first half finished 1 try apiece. Chiswick scored in the second half to put them ahead, but in the dying seconds, Josef scored a great individual try to level the score at 2-2.   It was a dramatic end to Round 2 of the Championships.

Round 3 comes very soon after the Christmas break, so we will be looking to maintain the great momentum that has built up in recent weeks.

Under 13s – written by Kerry Ealey

The day started well with the weather clearing and 16 lads making the long trek to Enfield for our third league game of the season.

Old Grammarians unfortunately suffered a few late withdrawals including both Props so we agreed to play a 12-a-side fixture with uncontested scrums. Scottish started slowly with some of the lads still half asleep but they soon found their stride. Josh F burst through the middle and scored a flying try after five minutes but this was quickly equalised as OG’s passed smoothly out to the wing for a score. Some quick thinking by Max T secured an interception and breakaway try which took us to 2-1 but this was again matched by OG, who then went on to take the lead, overloading the wing with a carbon copy of their first try to make the score 3 tries to 2.  Luckily, Max T was on hand again for another amazing interception followed by a great solo run to make the scores level at half time 3-3.

In the second half, Josh F again opened the scoring to make it 4-3 with a try made through sterling work by Mark D’S who’d run half the pitch. Not to be outdone, OG came back with another score.

Mark D’S secured a loose ball from a ruck and again broke through a few tackles to run the length of the pitch to take it to 5-4.  With players on both sides flagging, Scottish made the most of their replacements, rotating on some fresh legs.

The renewed impetus resulted in a try from Josh Guild to push Scottish two scores ahead.  However OG’s refused to give up, with less than 10 minutes to play, Jaime L tackled and Arthur D got the ball out from what had looked like a certain OG try. Scottish pushed forward but play flipped again and OG scored for 6-5, Scottish were now only leading by one score.

In a tense final few minutes play ebbed and flowed until in the last minute of the match Josh G seized the ball and charged forward creating a gap in the OG defence to score again. Scottish won the game 7-5.

Under 15s – A spectacle and a very close run thing – written by Ralph Eley

After a very long drive to Bishops Stortford the U15s arrived with nerves on edge. Bishops Stortford, a big club and everyone secretly knew their U15s had taken the maximum 15 points from their three prior league games in Division 2. Nothing was said but the boys knew this had the real possibility of being a long morning on the pitch after a long journey.

The lads started as they often do by giving away 2 quick tries as a result of handling errors. 5 minutes in and we were 14 points down but Scottish started to work the phases and win the possession and territory war.

A try was beckoning and it had to come and it did through Nathaniel with a conversion by Chris 14-7. Another ball handling error and Scots were down again 21-7. We were winning the battle but losing the war. Bishops Stortford were fast and were capitalising on our errors. The Scots did not give up, with the forwards going through phase after phase. Stortford’s discretions resulted in penalties to Scottish. Our scrum was dominant. Chris made some great kicks to touch winning territory. The resulting line outs were mixed with some great mauls but also lost opportunities. It seemed we were camped in the Bishops Stortford half often getting into their 22. Again the pressure finally told.

Two unconverted tries the second scored by Oliver after a wonderful sequence of forward drives and finished wide on the wing. Then disaster struck we lost our scrum half James to injury. James had deputised valiantly for Barns, who himself was injured and unable to travel. We finished the second half 21- 17 but now minus both of our scrum half’s.

The second half started similarly to the first with first blood to Bishops Stortford. An unconverted try making it 26-17. But again Scottish piled on the pressure. Bishops Stortford big lads were unable to absorb the pressure of our pack. Valiant performances from Max, Ben L, Jacob and in particular Timmy meant we crept up the pitch yet again to the 22. Then Ben F and Felix worked their magic with Ben F being illegally held back meaning a try opportunity was missed. But the ref had seen it and awarded a penalty try. 26-24 to Stortford. GAME ON.

After a full and frank discussion between the boys the game continued. A converted try to Scottish quickly followed finished by our hooker Sam LF. A hush descended at the ground, 26-29 to Scottish. Could we do the unthinkable?

More ill-discipline saw Stortford’s inside centre in the bin. Strangely this seemed to galvanise the Stortford boys. Fantastic defence from Scottish with big tackles from Felix, Max, Melvyn and Jacob meant we absorbed their pressure. Another unconverted try to each of Bishops Stortford and Scottish (breakaway run by Ben F fly-hacking past 2 defenders) left the score at 31-34 to Scottish. Two minutes to play could we hold on?

In the dying minute, Stortford found the space and scored to end the game with a Stortford victory 36-34.

Six tries each and one of the best performances the boys had put out against a very, very good side. Stortford admitted it was the first real test they had had this season. We left the game with our heads held high and 2 bonus points. Division 2 is a huge step up for the boys but they are doing themselves, 1st XV player Rob Stevenson who coaches them and the club proud.

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