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Pitchero Club

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Under 12's - Match centre

Chichester Festival
Hove U11s
Sun 1 Oct 10:00 - Festival Kickoff 10:00

A good first festival of the year for Hove U11s

A good first festival of the year for Hove U11s

The first festival of the year saw us take a Mixed Ability side to Chichester. With only 4 weeks of training behind us, we needed a bit of focus early on and it took a while for the players to warm up and realise they were back into festival mode so soon in the season! First up was Bognor, and it was a tentative start from both sides until Dillon woke the teams up with a typical mazy run to open the scoring. From then on the team was on the up and some strong attacking and robust defence led to a 3:0 victory with a second try for Dillon and a powerful smash through try from Ethan.

Next up were Petersfield who we hadn't played before. Petersfield were a useful unit and had some good players. It was a very close match which could have gone either way with some good attacking play from both sides and some resolute tackles. Both sides seemed to struggle a bit at the rucks, but in the end we worked an overlap where Alex sprinted round the outside for the corner to secure a hard fought 1:0 victory to Hove.

Shortly after we played our third match against East Grinstead. We had played them last year in the Sussex festival and beat them well, and we performed really well against them again. Each match we stepped up the performance and intensity and had a great game against East Grinstead with some formidable power running from Ethan, George and Rufus on his debut, alongside our usual whippet like pace from the backs. Tries from Dillon, George Graham, Ethan, Noah and 2 from George Cleary gave us a comfortable 6:1 victory.

We then waited an age (over an hour and a half - surely scheduled that way on purpose??) for our final match against our closest rivals and festival holders, Chichester. By this stage the adrenaline and passion shown in the 3rd match had been eked away from the kids by hot dogs, crisps, monkey bars, rain and a possible slight fear of playing Chichester. The match was a non starter for us and we couldn't get going with our game plan at all. We got no go-forward ball and Chichester played off the front foot in their usual way. Despite pushing illegally in the scrums a bit, they were very well drilled as expected and kept their shape well, used game management well and were using kicking tactically and the sight of 10 year olds putting grubber kicks through and kicking wide to the wings was a picture so early in the season! Beauden Barrett would be proud! In the end their dominance paid off and although we defended strongly, they came away with a 4:0 win.

So all in all a great start to the season. It was good for the boys to get some early festival experience and great for some of the B team players last season to get a taste of an 'A' festival. To win 3 out of 4 is great and the manner of the 3 wins was encouraging to see. Clearly a few things to work on, but well done to all who played and thanks to Will for assisting me with the team, and getting the coffees in! Steve

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