Junior Games Report: 9 October 22

Derby U16s vs Notts Moderns

Derby welcomed Notts Moderns in the NLD first round for the first fixture between this age group for 4 years, it certainly turned out to be a game worth waiting for!

Derby set the tone with a dream start right from kickoff as Joe Mitchell took the bouncing ball, skinned his opposition winger on the outside then sat the full-back down with a quick shimmy to score an amazing try.

It was a proper contest as each team tried to create space down the fringes of the ruck, and then take it wide. The Derby forwards carried exceptionally well in the face of a well-drilled defence, just go make even a few yards of momentum. All that work set the tone and the backs duly profited from some good ball, Joe Mitchell going over after Henry Straws kick through.

Henry and Max Stevens then put the icing on the cake by scoring a try each themselves after again spreading it wide. Wilf Chenry was flawless in knocking over his conversions; neither distance nor angle bothered him as he scored every single one!

The last 5 of the 1st half then set the tone for the true battle to come. Moderns came roaring back to camp on Derby’s line until halftime, but some ferocious two-person tackling kept them out and gave us a clean sheet going into the second half. We had a 4 try cushion but Moderns always posed a threat and it felt more like a one-score game.

Moderns continued like a rocket which put increasing pressure on Derby’s line pretty much throughout the whole second half. Derby knew they had a game on their hands as Moderns finally went over, scoring 3 tries of their own to bring them back into the game. Derby showed incredible heart and resilience to hold them there and regroup, eventually heating that welcome final whistle to get the 29-19 win!

A couple of mentions; Wilf ran the team from 10 like a general around the pitch. Josh Mohr put in an amazing performance at 7 against his old team, tackling everything that moved and showing up at full-back, wing, scrum half and in the pack! Jake Clarke our 8/2nd row was nominated by the opposition for running into a metaphorical Brick wall of defence over and over again, whilst knocking back any opposition forays around the sides of the ruck.

Big thanks to all the parents, friends and siblings that came out to watch the lads today. They were roared on by what felt like a capacity crowd and the support certainly spurred the lads on.

Derby made it 5 wins in a row, with this incredible performance, something that a number of seasons ago these lads would have thought impossible. We have had a committed squad of 28 players who have all shown up and put in 100% each week. They have all put in the hard yards on and off the pitch and to make it 5 games unbeaten at the start of the season is a testament to their spirit and bond as a team. That truly shone today as even those players who couldn’t play today roared on their friends as if they were there on the pitch with the team. Every player has played their part, whether this is their first season or 6th season playing rugby. To do so well so far is truly a team effort and every member of our team should be proud of themselves.

Derby U15s vs Ilkeston

With both local teams having byes in NLD competitions it was a perfect opportunity to arrange a friendly to allow the boys a game of Rugby. A fantastic turnout of supporters, both young and old. Derby players represented themselves exceptionally well in a tough attritional game, high passion fuelled the day, in which Derby players and supporters rose above the disruptions to the game arising from discussions with the Referee multiple times to address aspects of foul play.

It was lovely to have positive support from the Derby touchline throughout the game. Derby’s players and supporters represented themselves and the club well upholding the rugby values of Teamwork, Respect, Enjoyment, Discipline, and Sportsmanship.
Score: Derby 0 – Ilkeston 17

Derby U14s vs Southwell

Derby U14s welcomed Southwell to Haslam’s lane for our first-round NLD match.

On a bright morning, the game got off to a flying start with Derby winning the toss and choosing to play with the wind and Sun behind. We gathered the ball after the kick-off and made quick progress into their half and after a few additional phases and strong rucking from Derby, George Grey went over with a very strong run for the first try.

Southwell responded well and continued to pass the ball well making great use of the full width, but Derby’s defence were up to the task and held them out including some sustained pressure near their own try line. Derbys Scrummaging was superb and it enabled us to easily retain possession and often turnover the ball which was a key enabler for our second try. Following several phases of play in their 22, we quickly recycled the ball to allow George Dickens to find a narrow gap and go over in the corner. Shortly before half time, Southwell managed to use their pace out wide to break through the Derby Defence to score a well-deserved try.

The second half saw Southwell come out really fired up, and they made good use of the kick and chase to gain significant territory putting us under real pressure, and it was not long before they scored their second try, levelling the score at 10-10. The remainder of the half was very tense with both sides making handling errors and turning each other over in the ruck too. Derby finally managed a kick and chase after Southwell dropped the ball and we almost successfully touched the ball down behind the posts, but some solid defence from Southwell kept Derby out. The deadlock was finally broken after a great run from Adam Thornton covering almost a third of the pitch but tackled just a metre short of the try line, but great support from George Grey to pick up the ball from Adam and dive over for our third try, which was successfully converted by Ben Saunders. The final whistle went shortly after the restart with Derby winning 17-10.

A special mention has to go to Richard Slater who sportingly played the whole match for the opposition as they were short of a forward and he had a great game, individually turning us over 3 times!

Big thank you to Southwell for a great game today and for the good nature in which it was played. Some really pleasing passages of play from Derby’s backs, and well done again to our forwards today, really strong Scrummaging and ball carries. Matt Peynado, unfortunately, had to leave the pitch with a knee injury and we wish him a speedy recovery.

Derby U13s – Trained