Old Yardleians RFC: Club News

Shall we play or shall we go home?

Wed, 02 Feb 2011 03:43

The pitches were a little firm at the weekend and there were some doubts regarding safety, (why play rugby in the first place if you can't accept the odd bit of pain and discomfort).  Confusing? then read on.

First XV

According to my sources the home team were changed and on the pitch going through warm up routines, the referee was ready for action and then our visitors thought the pitch to be rather firm so got in their cars and returned, presumably, back to Southam.  I am sure that our lads enjoyed every second of their training session.

Development XV

With the return of some of the regular players our young side travelled south in order to beat the freeze to the rural tranquility (if you are front row that means peaceful) of Alcester.  The hosts put out a blend of youngsters and experience and performed with enthusiasm.  However, it was the boys from Tilehouse Lane who were on top for much of the match.  Tries from Sean Byrne,  Tom Thacker and Chris 'the curry' Rhodes and two cons from the younger Bucknall gave us a 19-5 victory.

Vandals XV

Risking life and limb the game against Claverdon 2s went ahead on our all-weather pitch.  Claverdon, with a large squad ready to perform were certain to be a real test for our well-drilled and, so far, successful team of oldies. Lads, I will offer you an excuse.  A very cold day meant cold hands which explained the many handling errors, mainly by the home team. To keep it brief, we gradually took control of all aspects of the game and tries came from Phil Watson x2, Mike Neary, Young Simon, Lee Coates,  Ali G, Alan Arkell and Nev who also kicked a conversion.  Ralph got two cons and the Chairman (Mr Fitz) for some reason attempted and was on target with his drop goal effort.  Final score was in the region of 53-5 in favour of the Vandals. 
See the full Vandals match report below.

Minis and Juniors

Steve from Woodrush and myself decided to make a late decision on sunday morning as the weather forecasters hinted at a frost-free morning.  This proved be a good call and three of our teams made the short journey and got some action.  Marcus is very impressed by his under 10s who have shown some excellent form so far.  The under 15s are now looking strong and with the new players linking well with their new team mates, we were a little too good for our opposition on the day.  A big thank you to Woodrush for their hospitality.

This weekend's fixtures
Saturday 5th Feb
First XV  v   Upton  away in a league game
Development XV    v   Upton  away
Vandals    v  Spartans Vets   home

Sunday 6th Feb
At this moment  under 7/8s  training
                         under 10s  training
                         under 14s   v   Spartans  at  home  kick off 11.00
                         under 15s   v   Camp Hill   away  kick off 11.00  For new parents  with satnav B90 2EF

Club Social Events

You are warmly invited to our social events and it helps generate funds which in turn enables us to do more for you so please give your support.  Families of Minis/Juniors give it a go as you are part of the club.  You never know you might even enjoy yourselves.

The Six Nations Internationals will be shown on the big screen and refreshments will, of course, be available.

Family Quiz  on Friday February 18th  (7.30  to  9.30)
This is aimed at our younger club members with their families and also at our senior club members with their families.  It is not the same style as Dave's slightly more adult based quizzes. Curry and Pizza can be bought.  Entry is £5 per adult and free for youngsters in full-time education.  Please let Shannon or Pat know if you plan to attend.

Beer and Balti Evening on Saturday February 26th
£8 per ticket starting approx. on the final whistle of the 5pm kick off international between England and France.  More details can be obtained through Chris Rhodes (Club Social Sec.) who informs me that the caterers are of a high quality.

St. Patrick's Day +1 Celebration on Friday March 18th
You don't have to originate from the Emerald Isle and you don't have to be RC but you will be blessed anyway if you come along to enjoy the craic!  Sharron of the Mini/Junior section of the club is planning the event and it should include a live band witth a caller to prevent you from looking like a complete fool as you dance.  Remember, if Sid and Brian Collingwood can manage a dance then the rest of you should be more than able.  Refreshments wiill be available, more details to follow.

Friends of the club

Mr Peter Johnson
   It has been good to see the iconic, long serving member of the teaching staff at Alderbrook School, watching the Ys.  Pete, if my memory serves me correctly, was once a player for the Shirley Park bunch.  He also had the dubious honour of educating my three kids.  Nice to see you at our place Pete, you got it right in the end. On the ex-Alderbrook front, Richard McC. feel free to bring your kite with you again.  As they say, you're never too young!

Mr Simon Brown

Just a short 'tail' about one of our favourite club vice-presidents and former Old Ys flanker/centre/winger.  I could be barking up the wrong tree but I shall lead on without paws.
The question is, what might happen if you go out for a while and leave your lounge door open, fountain pen and ink on the table, you have a white carpet and suite and you have left the dog at home?
A pint from Simon for the first correct answer he receives, not by phone or text or even by e-mail, the answer must be written in black ink on a white background.

Vandals v Claverdon 2nds - full match report

Saturday 29th January 2011 and Game 18 found us at home against Claverdon Lions 2nds; on paper a very tricky fixture, with their First team currently unbeaten & atop of Division 5 West (South) and a game last season remembered for the coining of the term "attendants" and probably one of our best team performances over at Ossetts Hole Lane in the pouring rain before finally running out winners 24-0.
In the front row this week loosehead Shannon "Steps" Killarney, Rick "Swing"Lowe at hooker & Bill "Bilbo" Burrows at tighthead.
With Big Phil Gouldbourn at the pantomime (I kid you not) younger sibling Alistair partnered John "Fingers" Lonie in the second row with the tackle twins Nick "the Assassin" Levey and Marcus "Shark" Hope on the flanks and recently returned from the World Economic Forum in Davos the Rupert "the Major" Young at No.8 (sorry meant on the pi** in Courmeyeur).
Out in the attendants this week Phil "the General" Evans at scrum half with Ian "Nev" Neville at fly half, and with Barrel being loaned out a "new" centre partnership in Tony "Fitz" Fitzgerald and top scorer Lee "Coatesy" Coates; on the wings Phil "Horse" Watson & Simon "Sideways" Singleton with Mike "Nearly" Neary sweeping up the leaves at the back.
On the banquette this week Alan "the Colt" Arkell, Iain "Johnno" Johnson, Dave "Ralph" Rollins, James "Hughesy" Hughes, new recruit Chris Rowe and the entire first team, Southam having wimped out of their game upon finding some stiff blades of grass in the dead ball area of the first team pitch.
Shark wins the toss and picks field position with our backs to Highgate United, so Claverdon kick off with an old mate of mine Rich Gray and former first team centre partner of mine at the Sils (yes that's where I really used to play inside centre) taking the kick off which doesn't make ten but Lonie still decides to show his footballing skills by kicking it out on the half volley for a throw just on halfway. Claverdon secure their own ball at the lineout and spin it out to fly half Gray and he kicks ahead but Mike takes it cleanly and clears to touch the ball going out between Claverdon's ten and twenty two metre line.
We steal the lineout and ball goes through the hands of Phil, Nev, Fitz, & Coatesy to Simon, who gets snagged. We recycle and the General ships it out to Nev who puts one over the top for Horse to run onto, difficult ball on the floor so he opts to grubber it out on the Claverdon twenty two metre line for a throw to them.
They overthrow and it's the General of all people taking it at the tail but it's a big long loopy pass in the midfield which goes marginally forward, for a scrum to Claverdon centrefield midway between the ten metre and halfway lines. But our eight get the shove on and put the Clav scrum under pressure and the No.8 is forced to pick up at the base and the General's over him like a rash followed by the Assassin; they stand him up and the 677 gather round and we turn him over, Alistair takes the short pop and offloads to the General who crosses the twenty two, passes to the Major who takes it into contact. We recycle crisply and Nev chips over the top but ball crosses the try line and the defence dot it down for a twenty two drop out.
Horse takes the restart, it's a customary bit of bish bosh from our Phil as he drives it over the the twenty two before popping it to Nev, to Fitz to Coatesy, long pass to Sideways who looks to cut back inside, looks for support, ball finds Rick, to Nev who gets caught, Rupe helps him out and we drive it on a couple of metres before we spin again, and ball comes out to Fitz who thinks he's in the pocket in the Telstra Stadium and he calmly slots over a drop goal (albeit a bit of a worker) for a 3-0 lead and the crowd go wild!!  Not quite as bad as a penalty so we'll let him off and at least we have the complete set now to go with our lone penalty.
Shannon takes the restart and takes it into contact and we drive it on, Rick takes it a little further, Nick Levey clears up and passes to Rupe who takes it on a yard, we set and it's short pop to Alistair as we soften them up around the fringes; and then we spin it wide, Phil to Nev to Fitz to Coatesy, he stands his man up makes the break passes to Symes who lights them up and cuts back inside and is hit by the sniper on the grassy knoll and promptly falls over to huge guffaws on the touchline but has the presence of mind and some slight embarrassment to pop it up off the deck to Mike Neary in support who slices through the defence to go under the posts 8-0. Easy one for Ian Neville 10-0.
It's a bit scrappy from the restart and we take it on but we concede a penalty on our ten metre line. They kick to touch but only find Nev who sends it back with interest, their winger takes it, evades a couple and cuts into midfield and is promptly felled by Chairman Fitz, ball goes forward in the tackle for a scrum to Yards, but the war is over for the Major as he comes off with a twisted back. The Colt Arkell comes on a bit sooner than he'd like obviously, with enough professionally applied tape on his knee to sink a battleship (See Mr Baldwin's Facebook footage). Arks packs down alongside his bosom pal Lonie and Alistair switches to No.8
Soon after we are camped just outside the Claverdon twenty two, scrum to Yards ball comes out Fitz scissors on Nev but he's caught and a Claverdon hand knocks it forward in the tackle, for another scrum to Yards. Steady scrum, the General picks & spins to Nev, dummy scissors Fitz, difficult pass for Coatesy to take and has to improvises a flick onto Horse but the ref deems it's gone forward, denying us a certain score. So scrum to Claverdon, Rick decides to take matters into his own hands, picks up Bilbo & Steps and drives them off their own ball, the General spins it out to Nev who sells some double glazing and breaks the line but is unable to get the ball away to Horse in support, and the move comes to nothing.
Play soon shifts back to midfield and Claverdon are awarded a penalty on the halfway line, they opt to kick and the ball goes out about five or six metres in front of our twenty two metre line. We steal it at the back of the line  and set and Nick Levey comes in on the crash and breaks through, looks for support, finds it in Shannon he clears it out, we recycle, Alistair's next up keeps the legs pumping, the 677 gather round and we press on forward in a huddle obviously trying to keep warm in the bitter conditions, Arks lend his weight to the maul as we tie them in and then the General decides the time is right and we spin. Nev to Fitz, to Coatesy, he's caught round the collar by our old friend Les Battersby (playing for his other Club) so we set and spin again, ball comes to Horse and it takes three to stop him and the ball is knocked on (Slow thinks deliberately) by Claverdon, but ref awards just the scrum to Yards. We drive them back, somehow ball squirts loose and it's kicked into touch by a Claverdon player.
From the lineout Rick hits Shark towering above the rest at four, and we set and drive towards the line, Arks in front, a one man impeneterable shield, we split the pod and peel towards the posts, the General emerges from the middle, we regroup and drive it on, the General looks right sees Horse, goes into retrieve the ball and has to duck under John in order to pop it out to Horse (you can watch this too on Facebook) and from a couple of metres Horse barges through his much smaller man to score a metre or so in from the corner 15-0 (watch the video the pack look really nonchalant after we score, they just turn and trudge back to the halfway line...job done). Nev misses with the difficult conversion.
Our next try a few minutes later is a "classic" involving our three top try scorers, we secure good ball and the General sends it out to Nev to Fitz to Coatesy who puts Horse into space, customary big hand off, runs thirty odd metres to the line, Coatesy on his shoulder all the way; Horse crosses the line unopposed and decides to generously pop it to Coatsey who runs it behind the line and under the posts before he himself pops it to Symes who's come the long way via Knowle and he dots it down to increase our lead to 20-0. Easy conversion for Nev 22-0.
Nev takes the restart catch on his knees and clears to touch just outside our twenty two for a lineout to Claverdon which Shark takes easily at four. We set and decide to spin, Nev to Fitz to Coatesy who still has work to do but uses his speed to get away and puts in a great long clearance kick which goes out near the halfway line. The Assassin makes a nuisance of himself at the tail of the line, but Clav manage to get it away as far as Rich Gray at ten, but he's forced to stand it up and Clav have to work hard, the scrum half puts a box kick over, bit aimless really but Sideways collects it, gets caught round the collar but gets away and punts it up field and gives chase. The Clav player looks to have taken it right on their twenty two if not in front when he clears it into touch, referee consults touch judge the right honourable Billy Bucknall and they give Claverdon the benefit of the doubt, lineout where the ball went out. It's a double whammy for us as we lose the lineout but the Claverdon fly half gets an "unsympathetic" pass (he's a mate) and he kindly knocks it forward for a scrum to Yards on the twenty two moreorless midfield. Its' a steady scrum with Bilbo & Shannon exerting all manner of pressure and it starts to collapse as Ali G picks up from the base and goes, good hand off, he offloads to the General who ships it out but it's knocked on in midfield (that'd be you Coatesy) for a scrum.
They win the scrum and it's a kick over the top and Mike gathers it and passes to Coatesy who sets off, looks like he's going all the way as he ghosts past the first couple, looks to be held but keeps the legs pumping and breaks free again finally gets stopped, and we look to recycle about ten metres out from their line but we knock on in the excitement. But it's a great tackle by the General on his opposite man at the back of the scrum and he knocks on, but to no avail as we lose one against the head but again the God's smile as the clearance kick goes out about five metres from the Claverdon line. Attacking lineout to Yards then, it's a bit scrappy but we get the ball away and it's a floater to Fitz who gets man & ball at the same time and it's knocked on in the tackle for a scrum to Claverdon from which they kick to touch to relieve the immediate pressure.
Not long after however, we are awarded a scrum a few metres inside their twenty two, we split the backs, ball comes to Coatsey, inside pass to Horse who does well not to collide with Alistair, almost accidental offside, but we get away with it, Horse takes it into contact, and we set, the industrious (read fit as f*ck) Coatesy standing in at scrum half passes to Rick, the 677 pile in, ball comes out and Coatesy uses his speed to go over in the corner 27-0. Nev goes close but not close enough.
Halftime 27-0 really too cold for isotonics, cocoa would have been better!! Slow rings some changes to get everybody on, Johnno comes on for the General, Hughesy for Coatsey, Smoking for Fitz and Ralph on for Mike Neary. Claverdon take the opportunity to introduce their own version of the big wing who lines up against Simon for the second half.
It's a long deep restart into their twenty two, and their big winger has his first trundle, but he's brought down but then proceeds to crawl along the deck, before getting pinged, probably for attempted tunnelling. Nev puts it into the corner about ten metres from their line. The throw sails over both jumpers and is taken by Lonie at the tail, and we drive it towards the posts, John feeds it back to Rick and in turn to Shannon and we peel off right, heading inexorably towards the line before John breaks free, he gets held up just short, he flips it back, Johnno can't take it but it's gone backwards and Bilbo tidies up, then Alistair and we set it, ball comes out, misses Nev ends up at Smoking's feet who does a great step, passes to Hughesy, back to Smoking to Horse, who offloads back inside again to Smoking, who sends a wider one out to Ralph who flips it back inside to Simon. We're camped on their line, we recycle, Johnno looks up spins it to Nev to Hughesy who shows off his ball juggling skills in midfield, the Colt Arkell's first to him and takes the ball, peels away and drives to the line, ball comes backwards, Nick Levey cleans it up and we set, Johnno looks to spin, but sees Alistair who takes the crash ball and goes over for a great team try 32-0. Nev converts taking the score to 34-0.
Shannon takes a great catch from the restart, we set Alistair comes inside but throws an interception to my mate Rich at fly half, the ball comes out, they recycle and look to run, but their scrum half goes for the box kick but it's too long and it harmlessly crosses our try line and Ralph has plenty of time to dot it down for a drop out twenty two. Nick Levey comes off and debutant Chris Rowe comes on.
It's a good long drop out by Nev and the 677 give chase, the Claverdon forwards bring it back and we engage and turn it over, we take the ball on a few metres, Johnno spins to Nev who passes to Hughsey and it's a good drive by him, Chris Rowe into the action straight away is to him first, Smoking picks up passes to Sideways back to Nev who uses his sand wedge to put one over the top, doesn't find touch and they punt it back over and into the arms of Horse, he passes to Smoking, he sidesteps one, burns another, nice wide pass but referee deems we've had no real advantage from an earlier Claverdon infringement and brings us back for a penalty. Johnno I think takes it quickly, tries to weave his way through gets stopped, Bilbo sets it and we drive it on, making good yards before it gets knocked on/turned over/give a penalty away (and no that's not multiple choice we did all three) and they clear to touch the ball going out on the halfway line. They win the lineout and again they go for the box kick and again it goes harmlessly dead for a twenty two drop out to Yards.
Smoking looks to take it quickly, decides against it and gives it to Nev who puts it up and it doesn't cross the line so it's a scrum centre field on the twenty two, Rick's pinged for foot up (live by the sword....) they take it quickly spin it wide to their big winger, Symes gets wrapped round a leg but it's not enough and he goes over on the corner for an unconverted try 34-5.
It's a great long deep restart which they try and run out, and get as far as the twenty two before getting stopped but we're pinged for not releasing. They hoof it downfield their big winger hurtling on after it, Ralph makes a great catch (just about) and steps the big unit and he goes sailing on by, ball is spun but cold hands and it goes to ground in midfield for a scrum to Claverdon.
Shortly after an attempted clearance finds Ralph, he traps it with his feet, picks up and sets off into the heart of the defence, he's stopped about five metres short and the 677 set and Johnno looks to come blind and it's a great show & go that unlocks the defence and he puts Nev in for our sixth try 39-5, bit of a shocker though as the excitement gets to him and he misses the conversion.
One of the Claverdon players has gone down with what looks like a broken/dislocated ankle, and an ambulance is called, but he is only one of three lying prone on the park as their "balls to the wall" defence starts to take its' toll. Slow offers to abandon the game to the Claverdon players but to their credit they decide to play on. (The unfortunate player Ross Cameron has had to have some extensive repairs to his ankle and was only discharged from the QE midweek..we wish him well and a speedy recovery)
The restart goes straight out so scrum back on the halfway line, steady scrum Johnno pops to Nev and loops round to take the return pass and breaks the line, looks for support, but the pass is knocked on; Andy Wigley the young ref plays good advantage and Clav bring it forward, but we turn it over, Bilbo to Johnno, to Nev, to Smoking to Ralph, who cuts back inside chooses not to go with Horse but pops to Smoking who cuts back inside and finds Simon who looks to plot a way through, he gets tackled and goes to ground but Clav are penalised for not releasing/coming over the top.
Nev pops it into the corner. We catch and drive towards the line, ball comes out eventually, Chris takes it on this time, gets tackled and we have to set again lots of Claverdon hands in, but ref decides the penalty's for not rolling away. We take it quickly and spin it, Hughesy takes it on in midfield, he's stopped Johnno's there, pops it to Rick who rotates towards the posts, Alistair drives him on, then Johnno, Bilbo pops the ball out from the back to Shannon, trademark dummy then offloads to Horse who goes over in the corner, great try made by our two passing props 44-5. Up steps Ralph for this one and it sails over (c'mon Ralph even you were surprised despite the clenched fist salute) 46-5
Alistair comes off and occasional Vandal Steve "monkey hanger" Cunningham comes on for the last fifteen at No.8 as a reward for staying to watch when all his team mates have all gone back into the warm.
Soon after Claverdon are awarded a scrum between the ten and our twenty two, they pick up at the base, flat pass from the No.8 to their big wing but our even bigger wing Horse drives him into touch, but referee brings it back for a penalty for not binding at the scrum. They kick for the corner valiant effort by Horse as he tries to catch it but it ends up coming off his back and it goes dead for a scrum to Clav five metres out, great defensive scrum by our eight as we get the drive on causing carnage at the base and we turn it over and Nev kicks long for touch, their winger fields it just inside the line but he's driven out just by Symes & Horse just inside their ten. Excellent defence.
Cunning stuff by Swing as he throws it short Lonie and we drive it on, Johnno spins short to Chris great pass to Smoking, to Hughesy to Ralph coming into the line, to Simon but frostbite gets the better of him and it goes to ground. Scrum Claverdon.
Nick Levey comes back on for the hard working Marcus. 
Our final try of what was probably a very long afternoon for Arks who, following a great run by Horse, picked up the loose ball and from just inside the Claverdon twenty two and set off on a long diagonal run, with plenty of bish bosh rumbled in under the posts 51-5 Try converted by Ralph 53-5
Mike Neary comes back on for the last few minutes for Horse (sufficient enough time for Mike to collect a bloody nose) . 
Shannon takes the restart and we all know what's coming and he doesn't disappoint to a large cheer from the remaining crowd, and Steve Cunningham takes the pass and takes it into contact, we set and Johnno boxes one over, the fullback takes it and is tackled and the ball spills into touch.
Final score 53-5 Final age 631
Another big performance from 1-22, the bitter cold making our usually crisp handling difficult at times, but that said another eight tries and our seventh highest win of the season (yes another six times over 60!)
Sadly having cancelled our scheduled fixture with Old Salts to take up the challenge of Spartans, a side like us unbeaten this season with eleven straight wins they withdrew their offer early on Thursday morning due to lack of players so at present we're in the Pool.
Some general housekeeping can we please have a look in our kit bags for a pair of club socks and the duplicate No.9 shirt.

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