Yorkshire Double Header
By Mike Malley
The u15's beat Ilkley but its the same old story against West Park Leeds!
The boys made the journey over to West Park Leeds feeling unnecessarily tentative following defeat to them 3 weeks previously. There really was no need as although that match did end in defeat after a very poor first half we ran in several tries in the second half to remind them that we are no push overs! Unfortunately today the boys only seemed to be thinking about the first half of that game!
Ilkely where also in attendance and it was agreed to play a half against each team.
In the first game against a previously unbeaten Ilkley the boys hit the ground running, almost from the kick off we turned the ball over, quick line speed putting the Ilkley catcher under pressure and forcing the error allowing Charlie to scoop up the loose ball. He made 20 yards before spinning it out to Joe M who put support runner Leo in with a nicely weighted pass to score in the corner.
Ilkley were a good side, they gathered themselves and enjoyed enough possession but handling errors proved there downfall. Ten minutes in following another turn over in our favour we went through several phases pushing Ilkley back into there 22, they held out for about five minutes until Charlie received a flat pass at speed, his power sending him straight through from 10 yards out to score. Matty converted. We extended the lead Joe M made a great break down the left, he got caught but a disorganised Ilkley defence was left flailing at Rorio's back when Jack Whit found him down the blind side from the resulting ruck. Ilkley pulled a deserved try back before Charlie killed any hopes of a comeback with his second of the day to seal the win.
In the second game against West Park Leeds it was simply a case of not trying hard enough, missed tackles and poor positioning allowing Leeds to run in 4 unanswered tries. Five minutes in we looked ok, enjoying enough possession to give hope that we would get something from the match. Matty and Jack Darby both kicking effectively and accurately but when Leeds came back at us they always had someone in support, keeping the ball alive and running in on the overlap. Due to the constant nature of there attack we slowly lost our shape as players went out of position to shore up a defence that looked increasingly leaky. We had our moments though, Jack Darby made a nice break at one point but the support runner knocked on when a clean catch would have meant a try. The most frustrating part of the second game is that with a positive mindset and a full complement we can give Leeds a much closer game. With late withdrawals meaning only one sub was available this morning and long term injuries to key players it was always going to be a tough ask but with Leeds also missing a few this really was an opportunity missed to restore a bit of Red Rose Pride!
Overall it was still a very enjoyable mornings rugby, officiated superbly, both Ilkley and Leeds being good opposition. Thanks to the parents and players for making the journey over and Andy/Barry & the Leeds lads they are always great hosts and hopefully we can sort out another crack at them soon!