U9s keep unbeaten record
After last week's battle against Honiton, Sid knew they could be facing another strong team, possibly even harder than before and, once again, they got it, writes Sam Channing.
After last week's battle against Honiton, Sid knew they could be facing another strong team, possibly even harder than before and, once again, they got it. With a heavy pitch and lots of rain, the ball was kept in close for large parts of the game. Both sides were evenly matched and the tackles were ferocious from all players. In a real end-to-end first half both teams showed tremendous skills in defence as was shown by the fact that the first score came just before the whistle, when Hubble showed great pace to run up the side to score. For long periods of time neither side were getting past the other until Mead found the space to show his speed and strength to go through the defence for Sid's second. Every player showed great commitment and determination. Welsford kept powering through. Lowe, Hayman and Bagwell let few players past them and were on every loose ball. Williams, as usual, did great work ripping out any ball offered up near him. Despite Sid's constant defending, Exmouth finally broke through for a well-deserved try before Lowe finished the game with a perfect scrum half's try, pressuring his opposite number into making an error on which he capitalised for Sid to win 3-1.Squad 1: Archie Bagwell, Christian Welsford, Joe Lowe, Kade Hayman, Ethan Mead, Tom Hubble, George Harris, Charlie Williams, Jasper Fitzhenry.In the second match things were just as tight and this developing squad got the perfect opponents to show their ever-improving skills and confidence. As before, there were times when little ground was made by either side, however, Exmouth managed to get the first break but a great tackle by de Gruchy saved what looked certain to be a score.Exmouth came straight back at Sid to get the first try. Sidmouth responded straight away and, from the restart, a pass to Hayman saw him power through the field to score. Harriet and Joseph made sure every loose ball was chased and everyone did their utmost to keep Exmouth out but, with an equally determined opposition, it was only a matter of time before they got another score. Sid battled hard for everything, determined not to lose their unbeaten record. A great steal by Malec saw a rolling maul get almost halfway before coming to ground, but with time running out Sid tried all they could to score before, eventually, Exmouth dropped a ball on their try line and Sid pounced on it. It was difficult to see who got there first, so Stokes and Malec can both take the credit for levelling the score just before the final whistle. Well done to all the players who worked so hard in testing conditions to keep Sid's record and break Exmouth's.Squad 2: Harriet Gaukroger, Will Stokes, Liam Goodman, Jamie Malec, Toby de Gruchy, Joseph Craven, Jacob Fisher.