U11 v Chepstow (Away) 16 Sep 2012

40-5 Win

A new season with fresh challenges ahead and, with only two training sessions together, the Bears faced a potentially tough opening fixture at Chepstow. Now playing 12-a-side games, comprising five forwards and a full complement of backs, positional awareness and discipline will become ever-more important – with this in mind, it was very pleasing to see the first challenge of the season successfully accomplished, with the boys keeping their shape at all times and playing some wonderful expansive open rugby.

It wasn’t long before Chepstow resembled startled rabbits caught in the headlights, as Monmouth completely dazzled them with their flowing and aggressive style of rugby. Josh Lewis, top try scorer for the Bears over the last couple of seasons, quickly opened his account of the new campaign with a trademark try out wide. Outside-half Ben Pilot quickly doubled the score and Henry Watkins, fantastic in the loose and at the breakdown, was rewarded with a try of his own.

Ben doubled his tally for the day with the Bears’ fourth try and Roderick Ho on the wing capped off a wonderful period of sustained Bears pressure and possession, with a fine team try in the corner. So, the first half of the first game of the new season saw the Bears reach half-time 25 – 0 ahead, with the match played totally in Chepstow’s half of the pitch.

The second-half saw a rejuvenated Chepstow finally get into the game, exerting some pressure on the Bears’ try-line. However hard they huffed and puffed, Chepstow did not have the cutting-edge to get over the whitewash, although resilient defence from the Bears was the main reason why they could not open their account.

Order was soon restored however by the Bears after this period of pressure from the hosts, with big Will Ruck piling over from a close-range tap penalty. James Robertson also finished off in similar style, using all his strength to get over the line with defenders clinging to him. Not to be out-done, Brian Rowlands finished off the scoring for the Bears with a try in the corner, bravely driving through some home defenders on the line. The final score of the game went to the hosts, securing a break-away consolation try right on the final whistle.

With 8 tries scored, shared amongst 7 players, this was a fantastic team performance from the Bears. Ieuan Rose at scrum-half distributed well and was tenacious in defence; Alastair McIntosh was marauding in both defence and attack, winning at least three interceptions; Will Green linked up well out wide and Cameron Ogilvie impressed with some improved tackling. With so many fine displays, it was hard to choose the Player of the Week Award. Newcomer Flynn Ruddiforth, a convert from football, pitched in at the deep-end and playing his first ever full game of rugby, received the award for his efforts – well done and welcome to the Bears!

Final Score: Chepstow 5 – 40 Monmouth

Tries: Ben Pilot (2) Josh Lewis, Henry Watkins, Roderick Ho, Will Ruck, James Robertson & Brian Rowlands

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