The Under 9s travelled to Manchester RFC this weekend to take part in their Festival on Sunday
The boys made a really strong start beating Bowden in the first game in their pool with some excellent displays of speed in both attack and defence.
However, they switched off during the first half of their second game against Sefton. Missed tackles and sloppy handling cost them four tries to none in the first half. During the second half they performed much better, scored a try and kept Sefton away from their line.
Their final game of the pool saw much improvement from the Hoppers boys against a Caldy side who had beaten Sefton in their previous game. It was a strong defence which gave them the win as well as some excellent tries.
This win left them runners up in the pool and through to the Plate semi final against Vale of Lune.
The semi final was excellent and proved to be the best game of contact the Hoppers boys had played. They were fearless in defence with superb efforts from Charlie Reid, Sam Horton, Jack Lightowler and Tom Pritchard. They passed well, keeping the ball alive when ever they could and created space for some excellent tries from Charlie Reid (x2), Tom Pritchard, Angus and Eli.
Unfortunately, due to the miss recording of tries scored by the Pitch Marshall and the referee, the game was officially scored as 4-4. This lead to a count back of tries which Vale won and so went through to the final in which they subsequently lost.
One silver lining for Hoppers is that the team coach, Simon Pritchard, was awarded the Fair Play award for volunteering to referee the Shield Final after accepting that the boys draw was down to ‘Human Error’ and not the organisation of the festival itself.
Overall though the boys should be proud of what they achieved on Sunday. Eleven outstanding players. Well done.