As most of Cheshire lounged in bed once again, due to water logged pitches, Macc U12’s made the trip to play Crewe & Nantwich. The main Vagrants ground was un-playable, but fortunately the local U12 management team had managed to secure the option of playing at a local school in Nantwich. This proved to be the best playing surface I have seen in 2 months!
We split the squad into the main Cheshire Plate Quarter Final fixture, and a team of mixed home and away players playing a Barbarians style fixture to keep all the squad warm and enjoying their rugby, focussing on skills development and tackling. This proved to be great fun, and even included two girls from Crewe & Nantwich, who taught the boys a thing or two! This was great to see the boys faces.
The main fixture saw the Macc lads being 3-1 down at half time, who were not tackling and getting to the breakdown quick enough. The Crewe lads had their tails up and were getting the ball wide and scoring good tries.
Firm words at half time from Coach Underpants, coupled with a few tactical changes seemed to “turn the tide” and the Macc lads then managed to gain the upper hand and started to gain control. Tries then followed more freely with some inter-play before forwards and backs.
The final score was 7-3 to Macc, and most importantly the coaching team was pleased with the change in attitude in the second half, which made all the difference.
Man of the Match went to Ryan Newbigging who had a stormer, and a most improved trophy went to Jack Van Vliet, who came into the team as a sub and did himself and the team proud. He has improved immensely over the last few weeks.
For the Barbarians game, awards went to Karl Rackham, who was in his fist competitive game for a number of months and came on as sub in the cup game and did very well in the front row and around the park. Archie Chesworth also picked up an award for excellent attitude, and general all round good play.
Also, worthy of mention were Harry Owens & Jamie Downes, who were all over the park winning ball and tackling as usual, and the return of Charlie Warr who has been injured for a few weeks, and added his impact immediately.
The semi-final needs be played at Macc before 14th Feb vs Ellesmere Port. Here’s hoping for an improvement in the pitch quality.