Hoppers U16s 44 Vale of Lune U16s 0
Sunday 15th March
Early in preseason we were grateful of Vale of Lune’s hospitality on a simply glorious September morning when they hosted us in a triangular friendly with Keswick. Playing on the first team pitch, enjoying the gorgeous weather and seeing early promise that our preseason training ground exertions were paying dividends provided everyone with a day to remember. After a good physical encounter first up with Keswick , Hoppers run out comfortable winners and then had the opportunity to laze around in the sun whilst Vale and Keswick played out a very close training game. I suspect the break had affected concentration as despite coming out of the blocks quickly Hoppers were too complacent and Vale fought back to end the final game 5-5.
Having enjoyed the away trip Hoppers were looking forward to a return fixture but the timing of our Tour had seemed destined to prevent this from happening until a space in the fixtures calendar presented itself this weekend. We had no hesitation in reaching out to Vale to offer them a game and we were grateful they accepted straightaway.
We were keen to brush aside the complacent performance of preseason but more than that it is now becoming a reality that just as this group of players are starting to build momentum and become a genuine team playing entertaining rugby their time as Juniors is quickly coming to an end with GCSEs and fresh starts beckoning. Hoppers U16 are determined to simply enjoy every opportunity to play rugby together and embrace the team spirit they have built.
Providing all the squad with plenty of match time as the priority saw some reshuffling of resources but the team spirit in the squad remained strong and it is a testament to their development that on the day Hoppers ran out comfortable 44-0 winners. The performance was all about the team and Junior Rugby was the winner on the day as the game was played out as a good sporting contest between two committed sides.
Next week is our Final Junior Tour to Yorkshire where we will be playing Moortown, Old Rishworthians and West Park Leeds, it’s sure to be eventful