Kettering U13s v Wellingborough
By James O'Leary
Kettering U13s v Wellingborough
The Easter holidays effected the Kettering squad’s availability this Sunday, our usual high numbers dropped significantly but we were still able to field a full team with several subs.
The players’ parents’ volunteer pool was also depleted and the kitchen staff was streamlined, but none the less super-efficient and rose to the challenge with ease. In the kitchen we started with our big guns prepping, cutting and bacon frying to get a great start ahead for the later shift who continued the top work by serving throughout and sorting out the after match meals. The players could take some tips from the volunteers who did a marvellous job in the kitchen and was noted by the M/J Chair who has passed on his thanks….special mention to Gail who bled for the kitchen whilst cleaning up… a probable (wo)man of the match if we awarded one!! Thank you everyone for your kitchen volunteering.
Speaking of our M/J Chair, Mark Byers, at the last moment put in a sterling performance as match referee. Some id10t forgot to organise a ref, but Mark stepped in and stepped up to game manage superbly well. Thank you to Mark B.
Wellingborough arrived nice and early and started their preparation, the roadside pitch was the venue for today’s game. (This has been our Waverley Road home this season.) The game would be played in thirds.
As for the rugby, the boys had a monster warm-up involving a lot of running work to ready themselves for the match. The weather wasn’t ideal, a splattering of rain made for wet conditions. You’d think the boys would have been raring to go, however, a sloppy start resulted in Wellingborough getting ahead and scoring first. A timely wakeup call that led to a few returned scores from backs and forwards. The first third was a pretty much an even affair, neither side dominating. Wellingborough had a lot of time at half back when attacking, Kettering allowing their opposition lots of time to make decisions with no to little pressure.
Kettering debriefed at the end of the first third, highlighting the need to pressurise when defending, and raise the tempo of defence and make sure tackles were low.
The second third and the tide turned, Kettering eventually got the upper hand and the game stayed that way. Kettering scoring some great tries and from varying player positions.
The last third was more of the same and again Kettering making a good habit of getting across the whitewash from players across the squad.
After the game, all players enjoyed the newly created beans mixed with hotdogs to go alongside the jacket potatoes. In summary, good game for Kettering, there were some miss tackles but that can be ignored owing to the effort put in. Lots of desire and bravery to stop the opposition, just things like the final latch, or completing the ‘ring of steel’ etc. the game also showed a lot of our newer players are bedding in well. Both sets of players were sticking to rugby’s core values and we look forward to the return fixture on Friday the 27th of April underneath Wellingborough’s floodlights.
Players Man of the Match going to Sam Owen who found himself playing at Centre and delivering another fine defensive performance and getting on the score sheet too. Well done Sammy.