KRFC U14s v Market Harborough
First game of the new season
Kettering travelled to Market Harborough for the first game of the season. There was a little bit of confusion at the outset, MH travelling to Kettering causing a cross over but eventually we readied ourselves albeit with a slightly later kick off by a few minutes. Great effort by MH to get back in a timely fashion. Luckily this was a local derby, further afield could have caused a problem!
We opted for three thirds as a playing format. The first third, Kettering were playing up the hill and against the wind. As with the whole game it was close. We enjoyed a lot of ball but we struggled to get some go forward. Continuity was good in that we recycled our own ball well. Our ball retention at ruck time was good, showing that our support play and general fitness and urgency has improved against a strong opposition. We had a high percentage of possession but seemed stuck in our own half.
The second third we had the slope and the wind. Personnel was changed and we started to motor, putting together some nice looking team plays including a score that involved both forwards and backs. It was at this point Kian took a knock in a tackle causing a bit of whiplash with the ground. This injury halted play for a while and took a bit of fizz out of our attack. (As of Sunday evening, Kian is at home and doing well, albeit not doing well at Monopoly and Cluedo!)
The final third we again had to contend with the incline and wind, the game remaining tight. MH putting together some nice scores and finishing clinically. The final score giving Kettering the win by 2 points. I had no idea of the score at the time, the game was pretty tight throughout.
The players asked me about kicking before we started, I suggested we concentrate on scoring as many tries as we can. But what do I know, we won by the margin of a conversion!
Great attack and pace from strike runners (backs and forwards).
The forwards fronting up in all areas, solid in the set piece and great continuity at the break down and taking chances to win the ball back intelligently.
Tackling was good across the field, some big hits were going in from both teams, Kian producing a wonderful tap tackle just prior to his injury.
The pick and go attack worked well when we used it, giving us a platform to attack from.
Support play was better and there were very few occasions of isolation.
There will always be coaching points, but let’s worry about those on Wednesday, for now enjoy a win on the first playing weekend of the season.
Next week we are at home versus Old Scouts.