By 11.30am the car park was already a buzz of anticipation, a ‘Blob’ of U25’s gathering around the 1XV changing room door, reacquainting themselves with face to face communication. They all still looked very, very, young and obviously still hadn’t found the keys to the pie locker.
By 12.00, the usual small, motley, band of old-pharts had dribbled into our changing room, probably from the pie locker, to hunt out the dog-ends of tape and bandaging required to pull various bits and pieces temporarily back into place before taking to the Sward, The Hallowed Turf, where we could relive, albeit in slow-mo, once heroic daring-doos.
We had Joss Selby and Loz Sibley as volunteer Officials for this auspicious occasion. They had put their heads together beforehand and agreed that the only way they were to keep up with play was to share, 15mins on and 15mins off. Clever B******s. Various ‘failed’ attempts at Bribery later we all gathered on the pitch, the crowd arrived and we were off.
The U25’s must have had a pre-match brew-up, with all enjoying a really, really hot cup of sweet tea. Within 30seconds of the whistle, they’d all passed through every part of the pitch, and our defense, and scored. We on the other hand had not and with infinite probability it became obvious that we were in for another bad day at the Office, at least scorewise.
As usual, we binned our initial battle plan (to keep it up front and bully it through) early on and they ran in try after try. We picked it back up (The Plan), now and again, and it generally did just what it said on the tin, making us good ground, through to their 22 on a number of occasions. Unfortunately, their defense was devastating and with blatant cheating their back row, fabricating doors and gates at will, came in from everywhere, to steal the ball, invariably running it back to score under the posts. Joss and Loz did their best, but the overwhelming pace and slight of hand the youngsters dominated.
We did have moments of Genius, matched by moments of shear incompetence, our Back Row competing hard and tackling like Demons, with Gollum performing surprisingly well, 1st game back this season, at Scrum half!! However, Hunty did get hold of it now and again, taking it on his now signature gyroscopic runs, taking it on a sweeping arc, backwards, winding the ball (and himself) up, with a Wheatley’esq propeller-like motion, before turning for the promised land. Unfortunately, they spotted this early and invariably, before the turn, two of their number would link arms with him and march the old chap back, using his own momentum, until he eventually collapsed.
The score terminated at around 82’ish to the U25’s vs 20’ish to us. Our scorers were Glynn Owen, Harry O’Brian, Adam Turner and Glen Edney.
Great Game, lets make it a regular fixture, although next year, lets win!