Squad: Reuben, Evan, Seva, Laurie, William, Jack, Oscar, Harry S, Harry BB, Joe, Eddie, Leo, Finley, Ronnie and Ewan.
The opening fixture of the 2018/19 U9’s season saw Oadby Wyggs take on Lutterworth in their very first contact match. Gum shields ready, body armour on, a few scrum caps here and there, and a bunch of eager boys (no girls so far this year, but more than welcome if you know anyone interested) who all seemed to be well up for the challenge. Time would only tell if all the hard work over the past four weeks in training would pay off. Well done to Chris for taking up the referee’s whistle. Always a tricky job, especially with eager (and opinionated) parents watching on.
The match started off brightly, with Evan showing a different side to his game and putting in two big tackles to set the tone for the rest of the morning. Two or three tries in very quick succession by Evan, Harry BB and Laurie went unanswered by Lutterworth, though after some tenacious defensive play by the whole Wyggs team, Lutterworth managed to get a couple of tries themselves with some excellent direct running through the middle. Wyggs started the second half well, managing to soak up several hard tackles without losing the ball in contact and going on to score. Those parachute fall drills seemed to have paid off. At times there were a couple of occasions where the speed of play seemed to catch out the touch judges, with each team benefitting equally and importantly with no grumbling from players from either side. Harry S took a knock to the face in the tackle and went off for some attention and as the match progressed things got a little less organised in defence. Some of the bigger Lutterworth players started to influence the game, scoring a couple of tries to narrow the gap. However, after some excellent interplay between William and Eddie, Finlay was able to receive the ball close to the line to drive over for our final score.
Just like the first match, Oadby Wyygs started off strongly with Harry BB running straight through from kick off, keeping two hands on the ball at all times and driving forwards. Not one of our biggest players, the look of determination on his face was enough to put the Lutterworth players off. I’m sure. With neither team able to build lead, tries were exchanged evenly during this match. Naturally there were times where there was some reluctance to get to grips with one or two of the bigger Lutterworth players for fear of getting a bump or two, but overall the whole team worked hard to put the tackles in. Joe, one of the newer players to the Oadby Wyggs set up put try saving tackle in against a player that looked at least twice his size! Textbook tackle with two arms wrapped firmly around her legs. Once again, as the match progressed a few players began to fall away in the tackle and there were one or two occasions where they needed to be reminded to line up from side to side, not front to back. Remember those voices Wyggs! Despite a strong tackle by Ewan at the end of the half Lutterworth finished strongly and secured a try to draw the match.
The defensive issues that came through at the end of the second match were obvious at the beginning of this one, with Lutterworth running straight through the middle from the start to score a try. After the restart, Lutterworth managed to get a turnover ball once again and with a lapse in concentration from Wyggs and some gaps in the defensive line, Lutterworth managed to turn possession into a try. Nevertheless, Wyggs didn’t give up and heads didn’t go down which was great to see. After a turnover by good work from Reuben, William picked up the ball and drove successfully for the line. The second half saw Wyggs up the pressure with two tries after some good running by Harry S. Lutterworth replied with two tries of their own after evading a host of Wyggs players in the tackle, by a whisker! Ultimately, Wyggs managed to come out on top in the third and final match.
Fantastic start to the season Oadby Wyygs. The support play both in attack and in defence was there to see from start to finish and the attitude of everyone involved was fantastic, especially considering we have several players new to the team this year.