U15 v Woodbridge
Score line is deceptive in this game of two halves
This second game of the season sees us play a well drilled Woodbridge side that showed their quality at the recent Suffolk 7s.
Again we would be without several squad members due to school games before and after today.
All those who did not play in the opening game would start this one in an attempt to allow an even spread of fixtures and playing time.
Woodbridge exploit the expected lack of full cohesiveness and are able to find gaps in the defence as we are unusually passive in some of our tackling. These regular line breaks require a scrambling defence which at times fails to cope with speed and power of the Woodbridge attack. Woodbridge are keen to take any points on offer and take the lead through a penalty kick.
Woodbridge are comfortably ahead by the end of the first half, however the half time talk which is lead by the players identifies quick fixes and positives to build upon.
The positional and personnel changes are evident as the first tackles and contact areas are much improved and the Woodbridge runners are stopped and frequently driven back and the Woodbridge possession in contact a more contested and slower as a result. This gives our defence more time to get organised and therefore more effective. Some players seem to find their feet in new positions and take on their new role with real enjoyment and effectiveness ( James C-H at centre is just one example, Josh Giles at hooker another). All of this means that second half is far more even and we are quick to score tries of our own.
As the game develops we continue to make changes ensuring equal game time. Woodbridge get a foothold back in the second half as we struggle to collect our own 22 restart. Woodbridge take full advantage and drive towards our try line as we are caught surprisingly on the backfoot.
The importance of the game to Woodbridge is clear as the restart is claimed and then kicked into touch.
If we focussed just in the score line this would be a chastening experience but looking at the game from a developmental perspective we can easily see the positives of this One Team approach. All the players were able to take positives from their own performances as well as an area to work in the coaching sessions.