Junior Game Reports: 23rd January 2022

U16s – Derby vs Rugby St Andrews

Derby under 16’s welcomed Rugby St Andrews this Sunday for the return fixture. It was great to see so many home matches this Sunday, the club was buzzing.
Derby had an excellent start and were soon over the try line. They continued to dominate the first half with excellent passing and great strength in the rucks to lead 31-0 at halftime.
Derby came out fighting and despite Rugby St Andrews’s determination, continued to show their great skill set, discipline, and strength throughout the second half. Rugby St Andrews scored a great try towards the end of the match with the final score being 66-7 to Derby.

U15s – Derby vs Sleaford

Derby hosted Sleaford in the first round of the NLD cup. Sleaford brought a large side that wouldn’t have looked out of place in a colts team but Derby fought hard and bravely in an even game. Sleaford’s physicality brought them 2 early tries but Derby hit back with sustained pressure and on the stroke of halftime that pressure told. Sleaford lost a player to the bin and Derby went over from close range making it 5-12.

In the second half Derby carried on doggedly; making massive tackles and turning over rucks but Sleafords size finally paid off allowing them to score 3 unanswered tries with some assured territory kicking from their 10. Final score 5-29 to Sleaford but Derby can be proud of their efforts today!

U14s – Derby vs Ashbourne

Both teams started well with good line breaks from both teams and some strong cover tackling. The first period saw Ashbourne retaining more of the ball and working through some good phases of play. Much of their forward play came from strong rucking and good quick ball away allowing the Ashbourne backline to hit the gain line well, breaking through some of the midfield defense. The deadlock was broken 10 minutes into the first quarter when Ashbourne’s No. 8 pick the ball up well from the back of the scum on the 22-meter line and made a break down the blindside. Ashbourne’s support play was strong and they scored and converted a well-worked try. This was shortly followed by another try build-up from persistent pressure and weight of numbers. Derby regrouped in the second quarter and started to dominate in the scrum, pushing Ashbourne back on several occasions. This gave Derby a strong platform to release the back-line players who found gaps in the Ashbourne defense. After several good rucks, quick ball, and persistent play, Derby’s No. 8, Ethan Harrison burst through on a short ball to score a well-constructed try. Ashbourne came back shortly after with a line break having moved the ball wide on several occasions. However, Derby replied with a solid straight-line run from Evan Yeomans-Stephenson to score down the left-hand side to pull another score back to see halftime 19-10 to the visitors.

The second half continues at apace. Both teams used their substitute players well which meant the game continued to flow to give the spectators the pleasure of some good rugby. Ashbourne came out the better in the first period of the second half, putting over 3 tries; two of which were from short balls off the ruck and one from open play and good support lines. Derby came back strong in the final quarter scoring two further tries, one of which was converted by Tom “Billy Wizz” Bull. One of the tries came from Derby’s continued dominance in the ruck area with Adam Bins (No. 9) controlling the ball well to feed the second row, William Buckley, 5 meters out from the line to crash over for a well-deserved try. Late in the half, Derby’s Ethan Harrison got his second from a really strong run from Ashbournes’ 22-meter line carving some great lines to finish off a good solo run.

The game saw some first-time run-outs for new players this year including Alfie Bull and Brenan Simpson. Jack Taylor captained the team well and there were a number of good performances from players. Whilst the result didn’t go Derby’s way, there continue to be encouraging signs from the team both individually and – more importantly – collectively. It was great to see all players meeting up in the clubhouse afterward and talking about different aspects of the game.

U13s – Derby vs South Leicester