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RUGBY: Two wins for Barbarians Under-8s
7:51pm Saturday 9th February 2013 in Somerset Sport
MINEHEAD Barbarians Under 8s played three matches against Bridgwater, winning two and losing one.
In the first match Minehead started off slowly on a wet pitch. The first try came from a strong Bridgwater side with a clean run down the wing.
Minehead returned fighting with a solid run from Tobias Williams and exchange of the ball allowing Josh Green to score a try.
It soon became apparent that Bridgwater had fielded a strong defending side with a number of tags being pulled from the Minehead teams belts.
Louis Fraser picked up a lovely dropped ball in the opposition's half allowing him to make only a small run and score.
Just before the whistle a couple of dropped balls by Minehead allowed Bridgwater to sneak in front, going into the second half 5-3 down.
The second half showed another strong Bridgwater side make some good attacking runs, with the advantage of running downhill.
Minehead fought hard to turn the ball over with some great defensive play displayed by all.
A nice run made by Obi Cridland and clean pass to Jess Westcott resulting in a try proved Minehead were battling on.
Two more tries came from Bridgwater, again after some dropped balls in Minehead's own half. The final try of the match came from Charlie Brereton after a sharp run down the wing from Green. The final score was 8-5 to Bridgwater with player of the match going to Obi Cridland for his strong, all-round play, both defensively and in support.
MINEHEAD needed to step up their game if they were to beat the visitors in the second game.
They made an electrifying start when Harvey Harris immediately broke through Bridgwaters’ defence and made a great pass to Aiden Gallagher who put Minehead ahead from the start.
Bridgwater returned with a solid run down the wing scoring try No2 within seconds.
After a number of tags taken from Minehead belts Luke Batts made a penetrating run down the wing setting up captain Ben Crosby for a sliding try on what was now a very muddy pitch.
Some outstanding defensive play then came from Minehead resulting in two turn over balls.
Crosby, along with Batts and Harris made some great tags. After a turn over ball to Minehead, Gallagher and Batts went on to score tries putting Minehead 5-1 up at half time.
Now showing real confidence and Minehead began to play with determination and their usual passion.
Another two turnover balls resulted with Crosby scoring the first try in the second half.
Gallagher and Batts again displayed some great supportive play allowing Sam Jackson to make a great try on the far wing.
Bridgwater attacked with renewed vigour but some exceptional tagging again by Crosby making five tags in one determined defence forced a turnover ball resulting in an intelligent run from Harris right through the oppositions defence.
The visitors will began to crumble under such a relentless defence and Minehead piled on the pressure with tag after tag being pulled from the Bridgewater belts. Another turn over ball allowed Brodie Sheach to steal the final try of the match.
Final score 9-1.
Man of the match – Ben Crosby for his great support play, determined strong defensive play leading to numerous turnovers and some great individual runs MINEHEAD took to the pitch in the third match looking confident but Bridgwater scored the first try.
Minehead returned with a solid run by Josh Green and an exchange of the ball to Findley Robertson who went on to score.
Two dropped balls by Bridgwater in Minehead's half saw Max Buck with great pick ups on two occasions going on to make some great solo runs side stepping and scoring two outstanding tries.
Bridgwater's riposte managed to sneak in through Minehead's defence far out on the wing making a laboured try.
On the restart Obi Cridland along with Finlay Walter and Joshua Payton made a good attacking run, a nice exchange by Cridland allowed Payton to score try number six. Bridgwater only managed to score once more before the whistle blew for half time with the score 4-3 to Minehead.
In the second half Bridgwater stepped up their game - an exchange of tries between Minehead and the visitors saw some quick scoring. Tries scored by Buck, Payton and Robertson in quick succession. Robertson made some great tags, showing Minehead were piling on the pressure defensively, knocking the confidence of the Bridgwater side.
Brodie Sheach and Aiden Gallagher came on during substitutions and scored some great tries with try assists coming from Cridland.
Bridgwater now looked tired; after a try scored by the visitors Payton started with the ball and went on to score his hat trick of the day.
Just before the whistle another try from Cridland resulted in another Minehead left the final score 11-9.
Man of the match –Findley Robertson for his outstanding defensive play and all round effort.