Sunday 9th April 2017
Sale U11’s tour report
The U11’s were relocated from Mold to the familiar surroundings of Denbigh Rugby Club, playing at the same venue as last year, but this time it was 12 a-side on similar sized pitches.
Sale FC 5 – 0 Sefton
Sefton had had a great season, undefeated until February when they met a strong Rochdale side. For the Sale boys, who are notoriously slow starters, this would be a tough opening fixture. The first half was scoreless with two strong defences cancelling each other out. Playing 12 a-side the boys knew that scoring opportunities would be limited, early in the second half Dan D seized the opportunity the power through the Sefton and his momentum carried him over for the first score. Sefton fought back, but the Sale defence held firm. A great start.
Sale FC 15 – 0 Abergele
Abergele had a smaller squad and the teams agreed to play 10 a-side, Sale were able to use their passing game to exploit the additional space and create try scoring opportunities. Josh scored two tries late in the first half, the second being the try of the tournament, passing from side to side to create a 2 on 1 which was exploited superbly. Josh Then completed his hat-trick early in the second half and sealed the victory.
Sale FC 5 – 0 Waterloo
Last year Sale lost to Waterloo in this competition, this was an opportunity to see how much the boys had progressed. This was another physical encounter between two evenly matched teams and there was little to choose between the teams in the opening minutes. Sale kept pressing and shortly before half time forced an opening allowing Oscar to cross for the score. After opening the scoring Sale were not going to concede, a tenacious and disciplined defensive performance saw Sale hold onto a well-deserved win.
Sale FC 0 – 5 Lurgan
The final match saw the two undefeated teams meet, if the games played earlier in the day were physical competitive encounters, then this match was played at a different level. Lurgan started strongly and spent much of the first half on the attack only to be forced back by some great defence with tackles flying in from Will H, Josh, Tom O’c and the rest of the team. Lugan kept coming and Sale kept repelling them. It looked like the first half would end scoreless until one missed tackle on the last play let Lurgan in.
If Sale played the first half without the ball then the first half then they were going to make amends in the second half. Both teams were playing great passing rugby, only to be forced backwards by ferocious tackling, as one team would press then the other would up their physical presence and intensity to cancel out the other team. This was a game of the highest quality and surely there would be another score, but no, Sale eventually lost by a single score.
This was a fantastic game of rugby and was acknowledged by both sets of parents who applauded both teams from the pitch.
Sunday 23rd April 2017
Sale U11’s Cheshire Cup
The U11’s were up early for the Cheshire Cup on Sunday, this year it was being hosted by Winnington Park, the opening 4 games were only 6 mins long. A quick fast start would be required……..
Sale FC 0 – 10 Wirral
Sale started slowly and conceded an early try, missing the passion and commitment that typified the performances on tour, after a lack lustre start there was an improvement, but as the boys tried to get back into the game they conceded a late second try. The boys were deflated, knew that they could play much, much better.
Sale FC 0 – 5 Crewe and Nantwich
Sale needed a strong start and initially they managed to hold their own, however in these short games the first try can be decisive. It proved to be in our second game, a mistake let the opposition it to score and there wasn’t time to get back into the game.
Sale FC 20 – 0 Wilmslow
Surely a match against local rivals would provide the wake-up call that the boys needed.….and it did. Sale played with more intensity, passed the ball and started playing as a team. As Sale started playing, the tries came, initially from Fraser, then Josh and Max. Sahib sealed the victory with a typical score after a strong run. The team were back.
Sale FC 25 – 5 Congleton
This was more like it, the boys playing with width, depth and pace, passing and supporting both in defence an attack. The tries soon came with Josh scoring a hat-trick, Max crossing and then Harry showing his skills with a step to create space to score.
The boys had found their game, but it was now the lunch break and which team would return after lunch.
Sale FC 0 – 10 Chester
Sale needed to make a strong start against a physical Chester team who would compete effectively at the breakdown, post hot dogs, we were second best at the break down and allowed Chester to take the lead. The games were now 8 minutes long and would this give the boys the chance to get back into the game? They never gave up and kept playing, but allowed Chester to score a late try and secure the win.
Sale FC 20 – 5 Wilmslow
After beating Wilmslow earlier in the day, we knew that they would come out strong. Sale started slowly, missing tackles, but quickly grew into the game. As Sale improved, the team were rewarded with tries, initially from Josh, then Fraser and then with two from Sahib.
Sale 15 – 0 Newcastle
Sale were back, competing at the ruck, putting the opposition on the back foot, playing at a higher pace and increased level of intensity. In attack they had rediscovered the passing game and Sale were exploiting the space as the other teams tired. Rahul scored two tries and then Ted scored the try of the day after some great team play.
Sale 25 – 5 Bowdon
The last group match was against Bowdon, we needed to win this game and hope one of the other teams could beat Chester. The team put in a confident display, playing as a team, working hard off the ball and supporting each other. Tries from Will C, Josh Will H, Dan D and Sahib ensured that Sale were comfortable winners.
Unfortunately none of the other teams were able to beat a strong Chester team and Sale finished runners up in their group and one win away from the opportunity to play for silverware.