Frosty start for Clevedon youngsters

JUNIOR RUGBY - A FROSTY start on Sunday morning saw a short delay to what promised to be a difficult game for the Clevedon Under-16 team against a Kingswood and Chipping Sodbury Under-17 team.

A FROSTY start on Sunday morning saw a short delay to what promised to be a difficult game for the Clevedon Under-16 team against a Kingswood and Chipping Sodbury Under-17 team.

For the first time since the start of the season, Clevedon were able to field their strongest squad, with the return to fitness of a number of key players.

Clevedon soon established the pattern for the game scoring a try within the first two minutes, scored by Tim Armitage after the initial Clevedon advance involving the whole of the team.

The forwards of the two teams were well matched, but the Clevedon backs were able to cut through the opposition at will. Man of the match, Joe Trudgian returned to centre, setting up team mates to score.

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Tim Armitage on the wing, Harry Knowles at scrum-half and flanker Will Richardson all scored two tries. Two of the tries were scored in opposing corners and converted by Dom Hanley. The half time score was 36-0.

To even out the teams Clevedon lent the opposition a number of players in the second half, which allowed Clevedon to exercise all their own squad.

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As a result the second half was a slightly more even contest, with Kingswood pressing deep into Clevedon's half at one time, to be denied by the Clevedon resolute defence. Two tries were scored by Andy Davis and the last by Hanley to leave a final score of 55-0.

The game started with Clevedon Under-14s in high spirits and desperate to get at Minehead. This they did and took the game from the start, scoring twice within the first 10 minutes. This shocked the larger opposition into a faltering and defensive mindset.

Every time they tried to move they were scythed down by Clevedon, who then took the ball and attacked. Chris Warren, Liam Holmes and Jack Haines at No 8 caused mayhem, stealing ball at the breakdown and disrupting every Minehead move.

The front row were excellent in the tight and loose with fabulous breaks by Kite and Jenkins. All this provided the backs a solid platform from which to launch attacks.

These were orchestrated for the second week running by the tigerish and intelligent play of Henry Parfitt at fly-half.

George McMullen Josh Blanin and Elliott Poulter were in fine form, with the wingers of Dunn, Charles and Talbot providing ever present support. Tries by Balcombe, Brown, Doughty, Warren, Poulter, McMullen and Blanin with five conversions by Balcombe saw a resoundingly comprehensive away win for Clevedon at 45 - 0.

Credit must also go to the opposition for never giving up and putting up a spirited defence. Men of the match are the back row of Warren, Holmes and Haines.

A long journey worth doing, this match saw a tremendous turn out by parents and family to support the team.

GORDANO Under-12s were in high spirits for the match against North Bristol.

Gordano took the lead with good blind side movement from Lewis Leaker from the back of the scrum, allowing Jordan Mitchell to score in the corner. Sam Hodge's conversion put the visitors seven points up.

There was some solid scrummaging from both teams and good defensive work by Gordano. North Bristol finally broke through the defensive line and levelled the score with a converted try.

North Bristol continued to pressure Gordano and quickly scored to give the home team a 14-7 lead. Gordano retaliated immediately from the kick off and forced a line-out. Good attacking play from Alex Reynolds and Callum Corcoran created an opening for Drum McMillan to level the score at 14-14.

Gordano dominated the second half straight from the off. The forwards found an inner strength and started to control the scrum, the rucks and mauls and were always in numbers at the breakdown leaving a simple task for man of the match (sponsored by Imperial Sports & Leisurewear) Drum McMillan to score his second try of the day.

Gordano continued improving and some first-rate passing from the backs allowed Kieran Avery to show some silky footwork to score a try and to increase Gordano's lead.

Gordano continued to pile on the pressure with good support play from the forwards and some inventive passing and movement from the backs set up Sam Hodge for a try. This was closely followed by a trade mark blind side try by Lewis Leaker.

Yet more pressure by the Gordano pack enabled Zach Wall to go over for try number seven. With minutes to go a flourishing backs move involving the whole of the line set up a try scoring opportunity for Jack Pope who did not disappoint. This was converted by Sam Hodge.

The coaches were particularly pleased with the efforts of Tom Instance, Eddie Tovey, Ben Beacham, Shay Ford, Josh Ong and Louis Wall.

Gordano Under-11s welcomed Cotham Park to Caswell Lane.

The Sharks took the lead through a try from Joe Crutchley dropping on a loose ball at the back of a maul. Cotham were soon to respond with their first score before Harry Glass reached over to score having been tackled short of the line.

Cotham worked hard at running the ball and applying pressure to the solid defence of the Sharks and were rewarded with two scores which put them in the lead 10-15. Shark's replied with a first try of the season for Will Morris, who went over in the corner.

With the score 15-15 and less than a minute remaining, the game looked like ending in a draw. Toby Baxter in his own half, shipped the ball from the base of a scrum to Noah Holmes-McAdam, who sidestepped the Cotham defence and headed for the line reaching it untouched to score.

From the kick off Cotham attacked and forced successive penalties as Gordano defended resolutely. They eventually knocked on which allowed Sharks to clear the ball to record the win 20-15.

This was a fine game in all facets of play. The Gordano pack was strong, winning ball against the head in the scrum. The forwards also performed well in the ruck and maul.

The whole team tackled well throughout and as a result certainly kept the score down. Sharks moved the ball well in attack and took advantage of the loose ball. Cotham can also be congratulated for playing their part in this exciting fixture.

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