Match Report
Reading Blue Coat School Boys-U14A vs  St Albans School
On: Saturday, 16 Sep 2023
Venue: at Home

Score: 12 – 26

Tries: Thom Sharp and Matt Tsoi

Conversions: Thom Sharp

After an intense week of training, our team felt adequately prepared for the match on this beautiful September morning. As we arrived at the field, we wasted no time getting ready for the upcoming challenge. The team conducted a focused warm-up and practised a few new set-piece moves, aiming to be fully prepared for the game ahead.

Our attention quickly shifted to the opposition, and although they didn't possess any individually larger players, collectively, it was evident that this would be a physical encounter. Unfortunately, to our frustration, our team seemed to psych themselves out of the game before it even began. St Albans proved to be formidable at the breakdown, successfully turning over several rucks, which led to them scoring three unanswered tries.

Despite the difficult start, there were some positives to take from the first half. Our commitment to the tackle was commendable, with a special mention to Oli and Jonta. Our organized defence during set pieces was excellent. However, on turnover ball, St Albans was quick to organize, and our defence struggled, resulting in two to three-man overlaps on the blind side.

The match truly felt like a "game of two halves." After some motivating words from Thom & Rufus during halftime, the team knew what was required from them, and they came out of the blocks running in the second half. We looked like an entirely different team, displaying newfound self-belief as we began running through the phases. The short lineout worked effectively, and our two pods executed some great moves before releasing the backs to do what they do best.

Notable runs were made by Josh, Max, and Lucas, creating space on the outside for Thom and Matt to score two fantastic tries in the second half. Our superior fitness started to shine through, and had there been more time on the clock, the result could have been much closer.

Many teams, facing a 19-0 deficit at halftime, might have felt defeated, but not this team. They were here to play, and play they did, winning the second-half battle with two tries to one.

In conclusion, while the start of the match was challenging, our team showed incredible resilience and determination in the second half. With continued hard work and focus, we know we have the potential to turn things around in future matches.