Solid Display from the Development Squad.
The seasons Back(Yay!) its Rugby Time! this season we have a brand new 2nd team which is the clubs Development squad, made up of some very good young talent, we had retained seven of last seasons Colt player making the step up to senior rugby aged 17 years old, with a couple of the senior player putting their experience to good use to guide this young squad through the season.
Sadly I missed the first game of the season which was the first league game for this young squad who had never played together before, working hard in training it was time to put what they have been working on into practice against a well experienced Cleckheaton side, they couldn't of asked for a better start to the season with a thumping 61-0 win, the lads have been working hard in training and it showed I was told in the display in that game.
With a 2 week break from the league due to they way the fixtures had been arranged, we wanted to keep the momentum going till our next league game. Ilkley offered The Bees a friendly fixture, against what was to be a very strong Ilkley 2nd team. some thought we was mad to take the game with Ilkley playing to a higher standard to our young lads.
It looked a lot harder with quite a few players missing due to work commitments and injuries, but we managed to get a team with a couple of the Vets on the subs bench.
the first half was a fantastic display for the young lads in defense keeping the Ilkley attacks at bay and forcing errors, but it was our play at the breakdown that was giving Ilkley platforms to attack us keeping us pinned back for most of the game with silly penalties but Ilkley failed to break down our defense, the line speed was great for the Bees which left Ilkley being forced to kick for territory the one mistake the Bees made in their defense Ilkley managed to open the score with some quick hands and feet to out pace the Bees defense for the first time in the first half with the conversion Ilkley went into a 7-0 lead, it was to stay that way for the half time whistle.
the second half was to be played very much the same way with the Bees defending their line and Ilkley having the most of the position, but then again that was down to the Bees errors but Ilkley's experience was to tell forcing gaps in the Bees defense going over for their second score, but the Bees young team battled away and when it was their turn to attack the moved the ball well and challenged the Ilkley defense , but that last ball just didn't seem to come for the Bees, with Ilkley going over for another converted try's to make it 21-0 at full time, but they way the game was played by the bees the score wasn't a reflection of how the game was played. I could name all the lads today for the way they all stepped up and gave the best and worked really hard for each other, to say this was their second game together they was bonding really well and think over the season will only get better, as the numbers are great at training so makes for building a solid team.
A couple of standout performances today was Oliver Stewart attacking the line and breaking the first line of Ilkleys defense, makeing great yards to carry his team forward. Tom Dyson at fullback was great under the high balls Ilkley was sending his way and wasn't scared of running straight back at the Ilkley defense. Peter Booth was a menace at the breakdown, and his tackle rate was non-stop, when speaking to the Referee after the game he said for him he was his Man of the Match. Phil Greaves for his forward thinking and controlling the Bees attack, also the use of his experience not to mention the lead boot getting the team out of tight stops, Harry Collis with his quick ball for the back to use and his terrier like ways around the breakdown sniffing out the ball at every opportunity, and with our young Captain Corey Spencer leading the team by example and keeping a cool head, like i have said i could name all the lads today for their performance.
But the Coaches gave their Man of the Match to Will Broadbent for his tireless running around the park also his defensive work, support play being there to carry the ball forward. Well Done.
The players said it themselves there still a lot of work to do to be the complete team but the number at training are positive to make that happen. Well done to everyone on the performance, am sure we took out a lot more from this game than Ilkley.
The Development Squad is back at home next week, back to league duties against North Ribblesdale, so lets get behind the squad come down to wagon lane. The first team is also at home in the league so a feast of Rugby next week.