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Macclesfield Rugby Club U11’s
Two Festival Reports
2017 Cheshire Cup Champions
In the blue riband event of the rugby calendar, Macclesfield RUFC U11’s entered a team to compete for the Cheshire Cup against 29 other teams from the North West. With 420 players registered, the 13 Macclesfield players needed to be on the top of their game.
The format was intense, 6 leagues, with the Top 10 performers from the six leagues going through to the Knockout Cup Competition, with 10 other teams playing for The Plate, and the remaining 10 playing for The Bowl.
In what can only be described as the league of death, for the last 5 years the winners have been Lymm or Macclesfield, so the draw for our league seemed to be extremely tough with Lymm, Chester, Stockport and a new team to us Oxton. We have historically been slow starters, but following a good warm up, the boys were up for it.
League 1 (Try = 5 points)
(WIN) Macc 5 V Chester A 0 (Macc try in the last seconds)
(WIN) Macc 5 V Lymm A 0 (Macc try in the last seconds)
(WIN) Macc 10 V Oxton 0
(WIN) Macc 25 V Stockport A 0
As undefeated league winners, we were comfortably through to The Cup. The coaches absolutely ecstatic that the team kept a clean sheet with no tries conceded. Our pace and teamwork was outstanding with every player contributing to dominant and classy display. As the boys settled down to lunch, the anxiety as to who would be playing in the next round started to build.
Macc through to the Cup Knockout Competition.
Before the games knockout competition kicked off, a steward’s enquiry as to who had qualified for the Cup. We had been drawn again against Lymm? How could this be after having beaten them in the league?
A challenge was made by Sandbach as to Lymm’s qualification in our knockout round, as Sandbach had also won all their games, the challenge was upheld and Sandbach joined us in our knockout pool. This pushed Lymm into the other Pool leaving Macc to play Sandbach, Widnes and Crewe, all big strong sides.
Knockout Pool 1. (Try = 5 points)
(WIN) Macc 5 V Sandbach 0
(WIN) Macc 25 V Widnes 0
(WIN) Macc 20 V Crewe 0
(WIN) Macc 5 V Altrincham Kersal 0
A totally dominant display yet again and unbelievably after 8 matches not one try conceded, this is unheard of in junior rugby and testament to our superb tackling and defensive line pressure.
Cup Final. (Try = 5 points)
It was a Cheshire Cup Final between Macclesfield and Lymm. Lymm comfortably won the other knockout pool and were flying high with confidence. We had beaten Lymm earlier in the season and earlier in the day, we had real belief for the first time in years that we could win, it was now down to the boys.
This Cup Final Fixture is legendary throughout Cheshire Junior Rugby and it was all set for a great cup final.
Our boys have been practicing attacking moves normally undertaken by players many years ahead. Within the first minute of the Cup Final our boys demonstrated cool heads and cut the Lymm defence in half with one of their planned moves and went over to score early. From then our defence was impenetrable as it had been all day. To top it off we scored another classy try and the Cheshire Cup was making it’s way home to Priory Park.
(WIN) Macc 10 V Lymm 0
Back row from left: Sam Young (Centre) – Jake Jones (Centre) – Oliver Davies (Fly Half) – Dylan Tyrrell (Forward) – Freddie Griffiths (Forward) – Billy Birkett (Full Back) – Toby Wilson (Centre)
Front row from left: Morgan Davies (Scrum Half) – Billy Bridgewater (Forward) – Ben Hall (Scrum Half) – Oliver Jones (Forward) – Fin Arnold (Wing)
Christian Tattum (Forward)
Missed the team photo above as he made his way swiftly to the “winners are grinners” lounge!
Back Right: Sales Sharks Matt Postlethwaite (Forward – Lock) – Presenting The Cheshire Cup
From left: Ben Hall (Scrum Half) – Toby Wilson (Centre) – Freddie Griffiths (Forward) – Dylan Tyrrell (Forward) – Oliver Davis (Fly Half) – Ben Bridgewater (Forward) – Billy Birkett (Full Back) – Morgan Davies (Scrum Half)
Many thanks to Winnington Park Rugby Club for putting on a fantastic tournament and to all the parents for showing their support.
Boys, you made the coaches and parents very proud. A truly exemplary performance with which Macclesfield Rugby Club will be truly proud.
MATLOCK FESTIVAL 2017
Back Row Left to Right: Oli Jennings, tom Brierley, Callum Roberts, Sam Pavey, Geo Edwards, Ed Roden, Kristian Bartlett.
Front Row Left to Right: Zac Wright, Spike Street, Callum “Chopps” Chopping, Ben Ashton, Ben Nadin, Sam Hughes, Ralph McHale, William Whiskard
The U11’s sent two teams over to Matlock to take part in their festival of Rugby. The best part of Matlock Festival is playing teams we do not meet on the Cheshire circuit. Teams from Bakewell, Dronfield, Harrogate, Lichfield, Matlock, Mosborough, Sheffield Tigers, Southwell and West Bridgeford.
Two pools were selected with 7 games for the teams. At this age group we play 9 a-side, and we had 9 players in the Macclesfield Lions, and only 7 in the Macclesfield Tigers. It was clear from the off that every lad was going to play every minute of 7 games – 10 minutes one way – 70 minutes of Rugby!
Some excellent rugby on show from the Lions team. With a full compliment of 9, but ONLY 9 meant they were all involved in every game! The players also had energy left to support the depleted Tigers, demonstrating excellent fitness, and team spirit.
The Lions certainly had the stronger pool to contend with, opposition from Sheffield Tigers, Lichfield and the touring Harrogate side. The Lions started off confidently winning their first two games (Matlock and West Bridgford). Super breaks on the wing from Fenton Bray fed by Spike Street and Ben Nadin from the centre showed a confident start, and some great thinking.
The lions then met a very strong Sheffield Tigers. From the off Sheffield demonstrated excellent skills and put our boys on the back foot quickly. It took a couple of minutes for the forwards (Callum Chopping, tom Brierley and Oli Jennings) to get to grips with their fast pace. Unfortunately the score was too high to recover and finished 5 – 3 to Sheffield. This was no shame however considering the clear strength of Sheffield who deserved every win they got.
The lions regained composure against Bakewell, winning comfortably with Sam Hughes working hard in the centre, and Spike Street looping kicks over the heads of the opposition, and diving on his own ball over the line.
Lichfield got the better of the team by a single try, however normal service was resumed in the final game against Dronfield. Kristian Bartlett nailing some crunching tackles, Tom Brierley and Oli Jennings forcing the opposition to commit more players before recycling the ball out to Fenton Bray or Spike Street.
Player of the festival for this team Spike Street – covering every square inch of the pitch in both attack and defence, massive workrate, lightning attacking runs in and out of opposition, 6 or more tries, and several assists.
A superb effort from the Tigers, seeing them win their first game (Matlock) with good pressure in the centre and working hard to pass the ball wide, using the wings. A convincing win building confidence.
Only having 7 players (for a 9 a-side game) meant the Tigers were always borrowing players (either from our Lions team, or from a tremendously sporting opposition). This was always going to disrupt the balance of the team as we ended up with players in different positions all the time.
Having won the first match, the lads lost the next 5, however each loss was by 1 or 2 tries. In each game there was some superb defence! William Whickard holding the ball up on our line, and Ed Roden clearing the lines with a great kick.
Forwards (Geo Edwards, Ben Ashton, Callum Roberts) fulfilled their roles well – hitting the tackle and securing the ball. I counted 5 turnovers which is an achievement given the strength of the opposition we faced.
Backs (Ed Roden (Cpt), Sam Pavey, William Whiskard, Ralph McHale) were fast and strong when needed. Many playing Back / Centre roles (as only 9 a-side) and we wonder where these lads will find a position in the future.
Player of the festival for the Tigers – Ed Roden – captaining the team and giving 110% game after game despite the difficulties faced. Safe hands and great support for his team, an excellent sportsman on the day.
In summary – the U11’s in TOTAL have huge potential, and I would put money on at least one of them ending up in Premier Rugby – and we WILL have some future 1st XV Macclesfield players in this bunch!!
All matches and training events will be managed through TEAMER. JOIN / ACCESS TEAMER HERE
Kit for U11’s
All players will need full kit (including shorts and socks etc) before we play competitive matches (October).
Kit required (MANDATORY EVERY SESSION – TRAINING OR MATCHES):
- MRUFC Playing top
- MRUFC Shorts
- MRUFC Socks
- Boots with Rugby Studs (NOTE “Blades” and Football studs are not allowed)
- Gum Shield (every session please – to be brought to the pitch)
Other recommended kit:
- Scrum Cap (Highly advised)
- Under armour / padded skin top
- Skins – (Tops). We’re discouraging long leg skins for matches however fine for training.
- Hat – (warm hat covering ears best) – for between matches / sessions only
PLEASE NOTE – Children not properly equipped may not be able to take part in the session.
Fixtures List 2016 / 17
|2nd Oct||Stockport Festival||Away||1 Team|
|2nd Oct||Knutsford (H)||Home|
|9th Oct||Manchester Festival (Landcover Cup)||Away||1 Team|
|9th Oct||Wilmslow||Away||All others|
|16th Oct||Winnington Park||Away|
|30th Oct||Sheffield Tigers||Home|
|6th Nov||Alty Kersal||Home|
|18th Dec||Xmas festivities||Home|
|25th Dec||Xmas Break||N/A|
|1st Jan||Xmas Break||N/A|
|5th Feb||Lymm & Sandbach||Away|
|19th Feb||Training & Wilmslow||TBC|
|12th March||Heaton Moor||Home|
|23rd April||Cheshire Festival
|30th April||Wilmslow Festival||Away|