By the seat of ones pants I ventured into unfamiliar grounds to prepare the ever versatile year 8 rugby league team. The boys returned to their accustomed code of Rugby, competing in the Hull Schools Rugby League Semi-finals against Archbishop Sentamu Academy. After watching the lads succumb to a close defeat at home against Wolverton last week; the pre-match message was clear “discipline and team work in defence is vital” and we should come away unscathed with a well-deserved win. However, as Jamie Vardy taught us this season, nothing ever goes to plan.
Sirius received the ball first and almost immediately scored two full length tries with Leon Stewart and Ali Alshereife both tapping the ball down between the sticks taking advantage of excellent crash ball plays. Unfortunately the early advantage led to complacency in a supercilious manner. The inspired Sentamu line-up were determined to give Sirius their best fight. The opposition forward pack brushed through a lazy and unwilling Sirius defensive line, concluding with three powerful tries making the score Sentamu 18- Sirius Academy West 12 at half time.
During the half time interval the hairdryer was in full effect, Captain Sam McAuley and talented half back Mason Palmer (year 7) also encouraged the lads to work better as a unit in defence.
The second half began and the boys were almost unrecognizable as they returned to the field as different animals. Connor Foster, Alex Dunne and Charlie Dobson threw everything at the Sentamu line. At times Ali Alsheriefe literally jumped into the abating Sentamu resistance. Sam McAuley was back to his twinkle-toed best! Skipping, swivelling and pirouetting around the forlorn Sentamu defence, creating gaps for the strong running duo Ali Alsheriefe and Leon Stewart to run home further tries.
Learning from the mistakes of the first half, the Sirius Academy defensive line was solid and every wave of the Sentamu attack concluded with ineffectual runs and a collective groan from frustrated Sentamu parents on the side lines.
Final score Sirius Academy West – 48 – Archbishop Sentamu Academy -22
· Winger Kieran Simpson was crowned the teams’ most improved player, giving everything during the match. His defensive and attacking contribution was exemplar.
· Full back Lewis Wilson was man of the match with 3 try saving tackles- stopping several marauding Sentamu runners who looked certain to score.
· Leon Stewart was back to his usual best and was virtually unstoppable.
· Mason Palmer, Kieran Welburn and Robbie Jones – All year 7 lads who stepped up well to show the year 8’s a thing or two about working as a unit and playing slick rugby.
The entire team deserves credit for their talented, robust approach to rugby, please congratulate the following students:
Leon Stweart (6 tries), Ali Alshereif (2 tries) Lewis Wilson (Man of the match), Nathaniel Walshaw, Keiren Welburn (year 7) , Ali Hussein, Sam McaAuley, Charlie Dobson, Keiran Simpson, Harry Blackham, Robbie Jones (year 7), Mason Palmer (year 7), Connor Foster, Alex Dunne.
Special thanks to Janice Hall for driving us down to the fixture and supporting the boys!