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Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION

 

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AndrewG
First Team Star

Oct 14, 2018, 11:59 PM

Posts: 1495
Location: Lancashire
Team(s):

Post #1651 of 1670 (3436 views)
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Re: [The Moose] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 13th October 2018 (ko 1500)
at Carr Lane, Tarleton
RFU Northern Division Lancashire and Cheshire One (Level Seven)
Tarleton 7 Bolton 27 (ht 0-22)
Admission - No charge
Programme - None issued
Admission - 50 (estimate)


I didn’t want a particularly long trip today, but Storm Callum dragging its heels over the north west of England was potentially problematic. In such circumstances I would normally head over to Yorkshire, but, such are the issues with train services in the north of England at the moment, that would involve a long day even if not a long journey in terms of mileage. I took a chance on a forecast lull in the heavy rainfall by mid afternoon to visit to one of the more local rugby grounds I still required. The rain did ease only to roar back in on a strong wind around fifteen minutes before kick off - the first ten minutes of the game were far from pleasant, but it dried up after that, and the strength of the wind soon dried out the spectators.

Tarleton sits amidst West Lancashire’s flat and featureless farmland - it is pleasantly rural with tractors passing by at frequent intervals, but a very unspectacular setting. Stagecoach bus services 2 and 2A combine to provide a half hourly bus service from Preston, with the ground a ten minute walk from the bus stops in the village centre. The ground is next door to, and shares its name with, the home of Tarleton Corinthians FC, who share their facilities with the local cricket club. The football pitch, smartly railed and with permanent dug outs, but not in use this afternoon, sits right against the boundary with the rugby club - when I was here for football, which must be fifteen years or so ago, there were no pitch side accoutrements, and the pitch was up against the hedgerow that still marks the northern edge of the cricket ground.

It is a very basic venue, both in terms of at pitch side and the clubhouse, which, although perfectly adequate, certainly doesn’t feel as up market as many rugby union facilities. Downstairs, as well as changing rooms, there is a kitchen area that features a seating area with tv screens. Hot drinks could be purchased throughout the afternoon. The bar is upstairs and quite small - no real ale on draft, though they did have bottles. Plans are afoot to extend the building and provide an upstairs balcony - currently the bar area is lit by skylight windows and has no view over the pitches.

There are two pitches set at right angles, with an area of grass between equipped with training lights. The pitch closest to Carr Lane, and directly outside the changing rooms, which features a small overhang to shelter spectators, would at one time, I assume, have been the first team pitch. Not now though, rather annoyingly given the early rain, with that pitch, which is roped off along the near touchline, staging a 3rd XV game. Spectators for the first team game make their way over to the western edge of the complex. This pitch too has minimal facilities, again just being roped off along the near touchline, whilst a scoreboard on the far side is updated throughout. The wooden boundary fence that runs at one end of the first team pitch and alongside the other one is adorned with advertising boards along its length, giving a slightly more enclosed feel. Plenty of traipsing across wet grass, but, in view of the amount of recent rainfall, underfoot conditions are very good.

Tarleton are very active on social media - their facebook, twitter and instagram accounts were all updated ahead of this game, and their pre match team announcement was done via a video. They also post a frequent request for sponsors, but, amongst the various benefits that potential sponsors can receive, there is never any mention of programme adverts. Therefore, the lack of paperwork does not come as much of a surprise - they are relative newcomers to this level of rugby union’s league structure and I have no info to suggest they have ever issued. A bit surprised they did not charge admission or at least come round for donations - perhaps the dodgy weather had kept the attendance down to a level that did not make it worthwhile.

Bolton are perennially amongst the leading lights at this level, and have rattled off four straight wins after an opening day of the season defeat. Tarleton had a very good first campaign after promotion, but this time around they have just one win from four. Having won the toss, I feel, admittedly with the benefit of hindsight, they made a mistake in playing against the wind in the first half. If they had built an interval lead, it would have been interesting to see how the favourites reacted in having to come from behind. In the event, Bolton’s four first half tries were a fair reflection of their dominance, and the visitors defended strongly after the break and managed more time in their opponents half than Tarleton had done against the elements. The hosts did like to throw the ball around, often to end in handling errors on such a difficult day, but when they got it right it led to the best try of the afternoon. By then, though, 70 minutes were on the clock, and although the Bolton defence still had further pressure to repel, they rounded off the scoring with a breakaway for the only points of the day against the wind.

(This post was edited by AndrewG on Oct 15, 2018, 12:06 AM)


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Oct 20, 2018, 9:43 PM

Posts: 2824
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

Post #1652 of 1670 (2969 views)
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Re: [AndrewG] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 20th October 2018
Towcestrians 21 Paviors 48 (HT 7-24)
Midlands One East (level six, 3pm kick-off)
Free admission (donation requested)
No programme (see below)
Attendance 160 (h/c)
Impressive array of hot and cold refreshments, including Cornish pasties at £1.50 (didn't bother)


Eleven tries, seven conversions, two red cards, one yellow card and an all-in brawl but, to my considerable irritation, no match programme. An elderly official explained Towcestrians' old farts (his words) are sick of chasing up those (at the club, I assumed) not doing their jobs therefore the 'paper' hadn't been collected from the printer. This baffling piece of bloody-mindedness meant Tows felt unable to charge their usual fiver admission. Instead, stewards opted to shake a bucket at the gate and request donations. I sidestepped this obstacle like the classy three-quarter I used to be. Unfortunately, the lack of programme became apparent too late in the day to divert either to the RU at issuers Leighton Buzzard or the footy at Northampton ON Chenecks. Tows' 20-page 2018-19 handbook was available gratis from the clubhouse bar. Despite that, I guess I'll have to trek back down here at some point in the future. Why do these programme f***-ups always occur at least 150 miles from home? Sigh.

Fourth-versus-second on a mild autumn day provided plenty of entertainment. Paviors, who looked dangerous whenever they got the ball wide, scored four tries in each half. Most were registered in the left-hand corner. Tows' right wing, unable to stem the tide, will have nightmares about this afternoon. The hosts had plenty of good field position, and scored three tries, but were always chasing the game. The red cards, one for each team, followed a punch-up near the touchline that almost spilled over into the crowd. I'd have also sent off the cowardly Tows player who dived, knees first, into a prone opponent's back as the brawl escalated. I presume the referee didn't spot this despicable act. Sorting out the melee, added to several lengthy injury hold-ups, meant second half stoppage time extended to 12 minutes. The yellow card went to Paviors.

Formed in 1933 by former pupils of Towcester Grammar School, Tows have played at Towcestrians Sports Club since 1970. A spacious, countrified site, next to Greens Norton Road, it is shared with cricket (the square separates the two main rugby pitches), hockey, softball (Towcester Tigers, apparently) and tennis (several floodlit, all-weather courts). A large single-storey brick clubhouse, positioned on the south touchline of the first XV pitch, accommodates all site users. Its bar/function room is impressively capacious. Cherryhopper was here a few weeks ago, and remarked on the zig-zag arrangement of spectator barriers on each side of the pitch. Never seen such a thing before. Must be a good reason for that! From a central crown, the first XV pitch falls away towards the ends, east and west. It's not great for viewing. There's neither cover nor hardstanding, but Tows seem pleased with their new corner floodlights. Plenty of parking, with early arrivals able to choose between tarmac and grass. The cricket club - members of the South Northants League - have a very cute wooden pavilion, comfortably the most interesting structure at a remote site about a mile-and-a-half north of Towcester's roadworks-bedevilled High Street, the A5 (maybe the first time it's been fettled since the Romans laid it).

Next Saturday should see me at Newbold on Avon versus Bromsgrove, the top two in Midlands One West. Happy to pile on the miles before the clocks go back and we're plunged into weeks of darkness. Both teams have won all seven league matches this season.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 898; Rugby Union 260; Rugby League 213; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Oct 20, 2018, 9:57 PM)


SpiderBee
First Team Sub


Oct 21, 2018, 11:15 AM

Posts: 979
Location: West Sutton
Team(s): Colliers Wood United & Queen's Park (Glasgow)

Post #1653 of 1670 (2806 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

My first ever game of rugby union was at Twickenham when Brunel Uni beat Uwist 32-31 with the last kick in front of about 30,000 people.
My second game was yesterday (no local football of any interest) at Sutton & Epsom 18-32 Tunbridge Wells.
Thoroughly enjoyable (if a little surreal for me on a Saturday afternoon) with about 300 in attendance.
Visitors deserved their win but Sutton were on the pace most of the time including two breakaway tries by their winger.
Be interesting how Sutton approach trying to move up to the next level.



The 2017/18 Colliers Wood United FC Website

wibbandune.simplesite.com/


AndrewG
First Team Star

Oct 21, 2018, 9:13 PM

Posts: 1495
Location: Lancashire
Team(s):

Post #1654 of 1670 (2709 views)
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Re: [SpiderBee] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 20th October 2018 (ko 1505)
at Malleny Park, Balerno
Scottish Rugby Premiership
Currie Chieftains 31 Melrose 32 (ht 26-17)
Admission - £12.00
Programme - 32 pages, £1.00
Attendance - 300 (estimate)


At this time of year, if the weather permits, I try to look out for a game in a rural tree lined setting to enjoy the autumnal display of colour, and this one certainly fitted the bill. Balerno is just about separated enough from Edinburgh’s urban sprawl to maintain the feel of a small village, very much the last built up area before hitting open countryside on the city’s south western fringe, and the terminus for Lothian Buses number 44 route. Bus stops are located within five minutes walk of the ground, with services every twelve minutes to the city centre. Despite both Hearts and Edinburgh Rugby being at home this afternoon, the city is much quieter than when I was last here at the end of August - probably a lull between the end of the peak tourist season and the start of Christmas shopping - and bus timetables are easily kept to today.

The Grey Horse seems to be the only pub in the village, and made an excellent call for lunch. Quite expensive, but very good food, and a choice of five hand pumps, with the locally brewed Alechemy Ritual going down very well. It is a short walk from there to the ground, which has been home to Currie since 1980. They were formed just ten years earlier in the neighbouring suburb from which they take their name, and initially played on school pitches, before acquiring their own ground here on land between the National Trust owned Malleny Garden and Balerno High School, alongside the upper reaches of the Water of Leith. Currie have been amongst the most successful Edinburgh clubs in recent seasons, but have not been selected as one of the franchises for next season’s fully professional ‘Super Six’, despite three of them being based in the capital.

Clubhouse and changing rooms are in adjoined buildings at the entrance to the site. The clubhouse has several rooms, including at least one upstairs above the changing rooms, and a pre match meal was evidently being served somewhere, as food was being delivered from the kitchen. However, the large main room was set aside for regular spectators to use, and quickly filled up with a good number of visiting supporters. Hot drinks could be had at the bar, but no real ale, and I saw no signs of hot food being on sale. Directly in front of the clubhouse is a large caged artificial pitch, laid out with two football pitches, and apparently a facility shared with the school. Players and spectators have to walk past this area before the rugby pitches come into sight.

Admission is charged and programmes dispensed from a table set up at the gate that leads to the rugby pitches. Two pitches stand end to end, the nearest being unrailed and unused today, with a paved pathway leading to the main pitch, the only one of the grass pitches that is floodlit. Meanwhile, another path leads up to a third pitch, on considerably higher ground, that was today hosting a 2nd XV fixture. Only the tops of the posts are visible to indicate this pitch’s presence from the lower level, and I assume it is quite newly laid as there is no evidence of it on Google’s satellite imagery.

The main pitch features a stand set tight against a steep banking that runs perhaps two thirds the length of the pitch, and has four rows of wooden bench seating on a scaffolding type frame. The remainder of this side of the playing area is railed off, and the far side has advertising hoardings along its full length that had a wooden lip atop them at a very convenient leaning height, whilst a slightly inclined grass banking saw some spectators watch from a few feet back. A manually operated scoreboard is set in one corner, but there are no pitch side refreshment or toilet facilities. What there is, however, is a tree lined backdrop on all sides displaying a glorious range of autumnal colour.

An international touch is added to proceedings, with the referee from the south west of France on exchange duty from his usual officiating in their second tier Pro D2. I suspect, however, it is more likely that the visitors were responsible for kicking off a full five minutes late - they returned to the changing rooms from their pre match warm ups several minutes after the home team, probably not leaving enough time for the walk there and back and to change into their match shirts. Delayed kick offs seem far less frequent in rugby than they were when I used to watch football regularly, but usually if they happen Sod’s Law will dictate I have a tight public transport connection.

That was not the case today, which perhaps indicated it was going to be a fortuitous afternoon, with the game providing outstanding entertainment. The sides began the day lying second and third in the table, separated by just one point, and the hosts took the game to the reigning champions with two tries in the opening ten minutes. Melrose had registered two of their own by the quarter hour mark, and both sides had the try scoring bonus point in the bag within a few minutes of the second half starting. The try count eventually ended at 5-5, and Melrose had opened up a 32-26 lead as we approached the closing stages. A kick and chase saw Currie score in the corner, but the potential match winning conversion fell short, although a further chance came the hosts way only for them to miss touch from a penalty.


Norwich6
Junior Team Star

Oct 23, 2018, 11:56 AM

Posts: 82
Location: Norwich
Team(s):

Post #1655 of 1670 (2309 views)
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Re: [AndrewG] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Sunday 14th October
at Bridge Road Kelling near Holt
Holt v Eastern Counties XV
Score 12-41 ht 7-24
Admission Free
Programme none
Attendance 250 to 300 very difficult to judge as
many stayed in clubhouse or even went home as
it was a wet afternoon
Tea £1 Bacon Rolls available


This was a match to celebrate 50 years to celebrate the opening of the ground. No programme available
issued today but picked up a card given to lunch guests
which had black and white photo of the the 1968 teams
and another of the ribbon being cut with a sword on the opening day

Ground has been covered on here before all the facilities are on one side with a good clubhouse and hard standing in front of it. The main car park was full but an overflow car park was available on the other side of the road. Unfortunately no cover apart from a tiny wooden structure
for the scoreboard operator and a few officials. The overhang from the clubhouse offered little protection from the rain meaning many opted to stay in the clubhouse.

The match itself resulted in a comfortable victory for the Eastern Counties side although Holt did pull the score back to 12-24 just after half time.

A shame it was a misty murky wet afternoon as on a decent day this would be a pleasant ground to watch rugby on. The North Norfolk Preserved Railway passes close by and the whistle of the trains could occasionally be heard.


Norwich6
Junior Team Star

Oct 23, 2018, 12:49 PM

Posts: 82
Location: Norwich
Team(s):

Post #1656 of 1670 (2300 views)
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Re: [Norwich6] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 20th October

London 3 Eastern Counties
Wymondham v Holt Kick off 1400
Score 17-25 ht 5-22
Admission free
Attendance 400 approx. As again many in the clubhouse !
Programme None
Diet coke £1.50

This was the first match on Wymondhams new ground at
Barnards Field. The ground is at the back of a large housing development off the B1172 road between Wymondham and Hethersett. Apparently the ground cost £4.5 million to develop and you walk through the car park to an impressive 2 storey clubhouse. The dressing rooms are on the ground floor and there is also a room containing a bar on the ground floor. Upstairs is the main bar and lounge and also a small club shop. A covered balcony runs the length of the upper floor and this overlooks the main
railed off pitch. Oddly the main pitch is not floodlight but
there is another railed off floodlit pitch to the left of the clubhouse.
Apart from the balcony and the overhang there is no other cover. Oddly too there was no proper scoreboard
A club official explained to me the Council would not allow them to put floodlights on the main pitch !
There are currently 2 other pitches marked out but as the whole site is 30 acres plenty of room for further development. A leaflet handed out to local residents suggests that the local Archery club will use the site and they hope to start a cricket club something Wymondham currently does not have !
The leaflet also says that a cafe will be available 7 days
a week serving breakfast etc from 0800. i assume that they are hoping that the building workers on the unfinished estate will use it and also the local residents too.
I did not see any shops or cafes in the immediate area so perhaps they have a market

The match pitted 2nd in the table Wymondham against top of the table Holt but was not as close as the scoreline suggests. Holt were totally dominant in the first half once they led after 5 minutes to lead 22 5 at half time Wymondhams try coming from about the only time they got near the try line. After the break a penalty put Holt 25 5 ahead and they missed a chance to extend it further when the ball was dropped as the try line beckoned
Only in the last 10 minutes or so when Holt were down to 13 men with 2 players sin binned did Wymondham threaten
Two tries one unconverted making the score look respectable.

On their first half performance Holt look likely to win this division

Should anyone be interested the Eastern Counties website says a match between Norfolk and Suffolk will take place
here on Wednesday 21st November,


Seagull
First Team Star

Oct 24, 2018, 10:57 PM

Posts: 1839
Location:
Team(s):

Post #1657 of 1670 (1886 views)
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Re: [AndrewG] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

After recent forays north to Biggar and Heriots (little changed from recent reports, but Heriots is still utterly wonderful), family commitments meant a much closer to home job last Saturday and we ended up at

Aspull 77 New Brighton 13
Lancs and Cheshire 2 (level 8)
Att 75
Admission free
Programme 12pp, £1

A day of pleasant surprise this one. Unseasonably warm weather, 18c at kick off, a surprisingly half decent ground for the level, some fantastic rugby and an unexpected programme.

The game was pretty one sided as the home sides backs ripped their formerly illustrious visitors to pieces, running in 13 tries in the process. The ground, well signposted, is down a lengthy track past the village community centre and is quite tightly hemmed in by a mix of trees and the car park and clubhouse. It's fully railed and has some decent terracing running half the length of one side, but bar dugouts there's no cover. The clubhouse is functional rather than plush and also doubles up as the Base for Aspull New Springs RLFC who share the ground. It is the union clubs ground first and foremost though.

The programmes and raffle tickets came around in the first half. Relatively basic but fully match specific it was most welcome at this level. It appears to be a regular issue.

Very friendly locals and as you might expect in this area a very down to earth feel compared to many RU clubs. No food available but you could get hot drinks from the bar.


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Oct 26, 2018, 11:14 AM

Posts: 2824
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

Post #1658 of 1670 (1731 views)
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Re: [Seagull] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Change of plan tomorrow, partly because the Lothians look well blessed for sunshine. I'll make for the Tennent's National League Division Three game at Haddington, where Orkney (two teams I haven't seen before) are the visitors. Programme confirmed. An early (2pm) kick-off suits me, too.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 898; Rugby Union 260; Rugby League 213; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.


Seagull
First Team Star

Oct 27, 2018, 1:15 AM

Posts: 1839
Location:
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Post #1659 of 1670 (1625 views)
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Re: [Fevers5washam Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Was tempted by this but the kids are knackered after a few days activity holiday so just local for us and Preston Grasshoppers v Sheffied Tigers. Enjoy the trip.


Ostrich
First Team Sub

Oct 27, 2018, 7:55 PM

Posts: 1173
Location:
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Post #1660 of 1670 (1523 views)
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Re: [Seagull] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 27/10/18 @ 15:00
Tribute Somerset 2 South (Level 10)
Somerton RFC 55 Wiveliscombe II RFC 12
Admission: free, no programme
Refreshments: tea and coffee, crisps and chocolate on sale in the marquee. 2 x slabs Rocky Road £2
Attendance: 43 (h/c)

With Saturday rail strikes throughout November, I’ll be staying local out of necessity, so a venture today into the hitherto untapped realms of the Somerset county leagues within the SW Pyramid. Somerton play on the Eirian Williams Memorial Pitch which forms part of the town’s multi-purpose Recreation Ground, but whilst the club gives the address as Gassons Lane, the entrance to the rugby ground car park is actually a turning off the main B3153 Langport road. The Sports and Social Club building, which appears to be hub of the complex, is a long ¼ mile hike from the pitch, away in a far corner, (and it’s a long ¼ mile hike back again, once you’ve walked there and found it closed! Laugh ). That walk takes you past Somerton FC’s two soccer pitches, where their reserves were entertaining Winchcombe Reserves today.

The rugby club only has the one pitch, which has wooden railings down each touchline. The grass looked a bit furrowed in places; these furrows seemed to run diagonally across the pitch, so I presume they've resulted from some drainage scheme. There’s a portacabin in one corner which doubles as a (small) club shop and storage area, and the changing rooms are housed in a container complex by the car park. They have a number of portable training floodlights, and a portable electronic scoreboard, which was wheeled out and appeared to be operated by magic. Or possibly remotely from a handset. Enterprisingly, they also erected, before the start, a large marquee cover on one touchline from which beverages and chocolate were sold, the tea urn appearing to be powered from a diesel generator! The marquee provided some spectator shelter from the increasing rain showers as the afternoon progressed, but, being open-sided, there was no respite from the bitterly cold, driving wind which eventually forced me back to the car, conveniently parked behind one end where I had a full view of the game in reasonable warmth.

Somerton started the day 4th in the 12 team league, whilst Wiveliscombe were 11th with just three bonus points to their name. The home side, celebrating the 20th anniversary of their formation, were quickly on the attack and 21-0 up in 17 minutes. Wiveliscombe came more into the game after that, but Somerton were ruthlessly hunting them down every time they got the ball, and 26-5 at the interval was a fair reflection of play.

The weather steadily deteriorated after the break as the rain set in, and this affected the standard of play, but Somerton added three further tries before coasting into the last five minutes with the score at 45-5. However, Wiveliscombe then had the temerity to score from a break through the middle, and that roused the home team to reply with two further tries of their own in the final three minutes! A decent game given the dreadful conditions.


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Oct 27, 2018, 9:23 PM

Posts: 2824
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

Post #1661 of 1670 (1499 views)
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Re: [Seagull] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Good information on Aspull issuing, Andy. I'll see about going there on November 17, when they host fellow high-fliers Birchfield. This afternoon, on the last day of summer, I was much further north at...

Saturday 27th October 2018
Haddington 0 Orkney 37 (HT 0-6)
Scottish National League, Division Three (level four, 2pm kick-off)
Free admission
Programme £3 (24pp: glossy; 20pp shell; 4pp match insert)
Attendance 155 (h/c)
The clubhouse bar apart, no refreshments available (though I was offered soup, left over from the pre-match meal)


With three clubs relegated to regional rugby from Scotland's 12-strong National League basement division, there really isn't much margin for error. This ultimately comprehensive victory kept long-distance travellers Orkney a place above the drop zone, one point ahead of Hillhead Jordanhill, 23-20 winners against Ardrossan Academicals. As for poor Haddington, well, this ninth consecutive defeat (not all as heavy as this, by any means) leaves them rooted to the foot of the table, 16 points - 17, realistically - adrift of safety. It's hard to see them avoiding demotion, frankly.

The hosts were competitive in the first half. They had a good spell of pressure around the half-hour mark but, otherwise, Orkney were well on top. All the visitors had to show for their dominance, however, were penalties in the 12th and 15th minutes. Very different after the break. It was pretty much all Orkney, who crossed in the 49th, 56th, 62nd, 66th and 77th minutes. Nice mixture of tries: some to the outside backs after good handling; some close-range barges from their big props. One was a penalty try, awarded for an off-the-ball tackle. Haddington, who suffered a 64th-minute sin-binning, almost went over in the corner during stoppage time, but their left wing was forced into touch by three defenders. Clearly, Orkney were determined to 'nil' the opposition. Apparently, the visitors were having a night out in Aberdeen before catching their flight to the back of beyond. You've got to admire their commitment. Not sure I'd fancy an expedition like this every other Saturday, certainly not in the depths of a Scottish winter.

With a little time in hand before heading six miles west along the A1 to pick up my wife from the Wallyford park and ride (she'd spent the afternoon shopping in Edinburgh), I had a post-match chat with one of the home officials. He said Haddington have suffered badly from retirements and injuries. They're missing eight of last season's team. Both captain and vice-captain were sidelined before the campaign began. Confidence is getting lower with every defeat, he added.

Haddington play at Neilson Park, a five-minute walk from the town's rather depressing main drag. I imagine Haddington suffers from the 'Edinburgh Effect'. Why shop locally in poor retail outlets when the nation's capital is a cheap bus ride away? Charity shops and takeaways dominate High Street and Market Street, which were probably once thriving thoroughfares. An artisan market - about 15 stalls - attempted to raise the tone. You know the sort of thing: chutneys, relishes, mustards, cheeses and smoked goods. The guy peddling gourmet dog food - for goodness's sake - didn't attract many customers. Haddington (in the Middle Ages, Scotland's fourth largest city) seems fairly upmarket, and new houses are being built on the Edinburgh side of town, therefore I was a little surprised to find the place so dowdy and forlorn. Some interesting buildings, mind. Most of the town centre is a Conservation Area.

Neilson Park - by the looks, open to the public on non-matchdays - is a very basic set-up. Its key feature is an impressive two-storey clubhouse, white paint dazzling in brilliant autumn sunshine, behind the posts at the east end. If you don't mind watching behind glass, or squinting into a lowering sun, the first floor bar offers the best view of the action. Neat and contemporary, with picture windows, it was refurbished in 2014. A display of team photos goes back to 1912-13. The dressing rooms occupy the bulk of the ground floor. Neilson Park lacks hardstanding, cover and floodlights, which makes it a venue best reserved for a clement day. A temporary rope barrier is in place on each side. The pitch, rather higher than High Street and Market Street, slopes down from north to south. A line of mature trees along the south touchline offers shelter, though with the wind coming from the north they weren't much use today. An adjacent training area has floodlights, and there are several all-weather tennis courts in the site's north-west corner. Across Mill Wynd (Haddington was once noted for textile mills), on Aubigny Sports Centre's plastic pitch, thick-thighed lasses were playing hockey. With access to Neilson Park possible at various points, Haddington cannot take a gate. They sell their match programme in the bar before the game then hawk it round the pitch after kick-off. Plenty of skinflints declined to purchase. Honestly! Haddington's two landmarks, the Town Hall (complete with spire, reminiscent of Berwick-upon-Tweed) and St Mary's Collegiate Church, are visible from the ground. There isn't any on site parking. It's street parking for all on narrow Mill Wynd.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 898; Rugby Union 260; Rugby League 213; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Oct 27, 2018, 10:01 PM)


AndrewG
First Team Star

Oct 28, 2018, 8:52 PM

Posts: 1495
Location: Lancashire
Team(s):

Post #1662 of 1670 (1282 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 27th October 2018 (ko 1500)
at Radcliffe Road, Bury
Lancashire County Rugby Union League Division One
Bury 24 Burnley 38 (ht 7-24)
Admission - No charge
Programme - None issued
Attendance - 60 (estimate)


I wanted to stay reasonably local this weekend, and the weather forecast obliged with the north west of England amongst the more favoured areas. And on this occasion the forecast was spot on, morning cloud clearing to unbroken blue skies by kick off time, albeit with a chilly wind. It made for perfect conditions to enjoy what is a cracking little ground for such a lowly level. The only disappointment would be for those who require paper - at this level in Lancashire programmes would be the exception rather than the norm, but Bury must have issued in the relatively recent past - a page on their website gives details of sponsorship rates including programme adverts, though it is not obvious which season it refers to.

Bury Sports Club is an umbrella organisation that covers the various sports clubs who are based here, which includes the town’s rugby union, cricket and squash teams. The ground is very close to Bury FC’s Gigg Lane home, close enough for a sign at the entrance to state that parking is for patrons of Bury Sports Club only and not available for football spectators. Not an issue today with the football away from home, which is also probably the best time to visit as a public transport user, as the same plethora of buses that serve stops on Manchester Road close to the football ground are used to reach here. Bury town centre would also be within comfortable walking distance, although I had no need to go there as my bus passed here on its way into town. Considering its proximity to a busy main road, the ground has a very pleasant secluded setting, and today’s wind direction helped ensure traffic noise could not be heard, although the occasional whistle from trains on the East Lancashire Railway could.

All of the buildings on the ground are wrapped along its eastern edge, with the two single storey structures that are reached first housing, respectively, the rugby club changing rooms and the clubhouse. A staircase heads up past the bar, leading into a third, newer looking, building that is not obviously directly linked when looking from outside. It looked like there was a separate bar through there, and judging from the shape it also housed the squash courts. Furthest north and separated from the rest is a very new looking wooden built cricket pavillion. The bar served a comfortable lounge area, that provided plenty of room for spectators with no evidence of a pre match meal taking place. Three hand pumps, albeit fairly run of the mill offerings from Thwaites, Banks’s and Eagle, whilst hot drinks and a choice of hot pies and pasties could also be had from the bar.

The cricket pitch is closest to the clubhouse, with two rugby pitches beyond that whose playing areas do not overlap. The main pitch is railed along both sides, with a line of benches along the near side, though these are really sited along the cricket boundary, but being backless you can face either way. The low sun meant I chose to watch from the far side, where a tree lined banking behind the clubhouse provides a very pleasant backdrop. The second rugby pitch, unrailed and today hosting a 3rd XV fixture, sits at right angles at the southern end. There is no scoreboard but there are training lights. I assume the main pitch at one time ran at right angles to its current lay out and overlapped the cricket outfield - this would certainly explain the location of a small and seemingly quite aged brick built stand. With three rows of seats it now sits behind the posts close to the corner flag - virtually unused today as you would have been plagued by the sun - it probably still serves a useful purpose on a wet afternoon.

This new division already seems to have split into three groups, the top four well ahead of the rest, the bottom four struggling against anyone higher in the table, and todays opponents sitting in the middle, each starting the day with three wins and three defeats from their six games. Early Bury pressure comes to nought, with Burnley breaking away to score from their first attack. Despite a penalty count massively in the hosts favour, Burnley go on to run in four unanswered first half tries, frequently ripping through the midfield of the Bury defence. However, injuries to both centres see Burnley have to move both starting flankers into the backs, and offers the hosts some respite. They score with the last play before the interval, and again early in the second half, and, after Burnley extend their lead, the next two tries also go to Bury to narrow the gap to seven points. That was as close as they got, however, Burnley adding the final score for a 6-4 try count in the favour that provided a very entertaining afternoon.


The Moose
First Team Star

Oct 29, 2018, 8:54 PM

Posts: 1658
Location: The West Country
Team(s):

Post #1663 of 1670 (1154 views)
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Re: [AndrewG] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Sat 27th - STH COUNTIES STH (level 7): DORCHESTER 12 DEVIZES 53

ADM: £2 inc 40 page PROG. ATT: h/c 125

My original plan to watch footy in Devon went out the window, after a call to attend Dorchester hospital. Clyst Valley therefore can wait for another day. Having left said facility just before 3pm, I just had time to get to Coburg Road around a mile away. Probably a similar distance from the West & South train stations, near to the new Poundbury estate.

A three pitch complex, with the main one being behind the lush clubhouse down a slight slope. Surrounded by trees on three sides & fully railed, with the large clubhouse down the other side. Decent programme for this level too so Dorchester are surprisingly struggling. Fair play to the visitors as they ran away with proceedings. Hopefully family emergency permitting, I might get back to the round ball game next weekend.

KRTM :-)


cherryhopper
Chelsea Transfer Target

Nov 3, 2018, 12:01 AM

Posts: 3901
Location: The Premier League town of Bournemouth
Team(s): AFC Bournemouth, Verwood Town, Sunderland

Post #1664 of 1670 (859 views)
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Re: [The Moose] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Friday 2nd November - Dorset & Wilts 1 South (Level 8)
Weymouth & Portland 12-26 Sherborne II (HT 12-15)
Headcount 108 - F + N

Entertaining first half, hosts had chance to take the lead in the 10th minute with a penalty but missed and soon after the visitors went over in the right corner to open the scoring. They missed the conversion but kicked a penalty soon after to lead 8-0. A breakaway try from midfield saw the hosts get a foothold in the game, the conversion reducing arrears to a single point but the hosts replied five minutes before half time with a converted try to restore their 8 point lead. In the last play of the first half the hosts went over in the right corner to go in at the break 3 points behind having missed the conversion. Not so much action in second half, an early penalty for the visitors who then had a break for the line in the 50th minute but a try saving tackle prevented them scoring, but a foul somewhere along the way was committed and their #11 sin binned, they kicked the points which meant the hosts to score twice and with 14 men. Not long after serving his time the same player got a second yellow which meant a red card and the visitors made their man advantage count scoring a third try in the right corner with the final play of the game.

Match played on the floodlit pitch which I don't think is the main one, that I guess is the pitch straight ahead on entering enclosed by a wooden fence on two sides with the clubhouse in the far corner. So, like Lytchett Minster and Combe Down, will have to return one Saturday afternoon to see a game on the main pitch. The floodlit pitch is in an open field to the north of the car park with no pitch barriers. It might be more scenic in daylight with houses on the hill to the west, only rising streetlights visible at night. Behind the west side is a cycle path with Sainsbury's beyond.

More Friday night rugby planned for the rest of this month with North Petherton on 16th, Dudley Kingswinford on 23rd and Broadstreet on 30th.


(This post was edited by cherryhopper on Nov 3, 2018, 12:01 AM)


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Nov 3, 2018, 8:23 PM

Posts: 2824
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

Post #1665 of 1670 (770 views)
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Re: [cherryhopper] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 3rd November 2018
Cambridge 23 Bishop's Stortford 22 (HT 8-5)
National League, Division One (level three, kick-off 2pm)
Admission £10 (early bird offer, valid up to an hour before kick-off. After that, it's £15)
Programme (w/a) 60pp (glossy, though only 8pp - including the cover - match specific)
Attendance 850 (estimate)
Hogroast (outside) and burgers (inside) available - didn't sample either


I had a feeling this derby between out-of-form teams just above the relegation zone would be tight, and so it proved. Cambridge clinched a fortuitous win from the last action of an absorbing contest. In the sixth minute of stoppage time, fly-half Lawrence Rayner landed a penalty from in front of the posts. It was harsh on Bishop's Stortford, whom I considered the better side. In rugby league, the better team wins 99 times out of a hundred. In rugby union, however, possibly owing to its arcane laws, I've seen the less capable side win on many occasions. The visitors thought they'd snatched victory in the first minute of stoppage time when full-back Sam Winter muscled his way to the line from the base of a scrum. I had a better view of this passage of play than either the referee or the touch judge. After consulting, the former awarded a try. My opinion that Winter 'bounced' the ball appeared to be shared by the home players. With the scores tied at 20-20, fly-half Manu Vunipola kicked Stortford into what seemed likely to be a decisive lead.

Rayner, struggling with his kicks in a stiff, downfield breeze, missed a second-minute penalty before finding the target with another four minutes later. Stortford openside flanker Dan Elsom popped up on the right wing in the ninth minute to shrug aside defenders in a 20m burst to the corner. Unaccountably, Cambridge failed through tactical kicking to make the most of the wind, behind them in the first half, but did edge ahead at the break in bizarre circumstances. In the sixth minute of added time, Rayner struck a post with a penalty attempt. The ball ricocheted towards his backs, who moved it wide for right wing Kwaku Asiedu to batter through weak tackling and touch down by the flag. Rayner, clearly learning nothing, was off target with the conversion attempt. I felt a wind-backed Stortford would ease to a comfortable win. They certainly began the second half well. Cambridge dropped the kick-off skier, and within two minutes visiting loosehead prop Louis Castiglione barged over by the posts, crowning a concerted spell of forward pressure. Vunipola added the extras for a 12-8 advantage. Credit to the hosts, though. They didn't have much quality ball but did make the most of what little there was. Left wing Sam Yawayawa wriggled over in the 50th minute, Rayner converting for a one-point Cambridge lead. In the 67th minute, blindside flanker Jake McCloud crossed by the posts after a team-mate's break from midfield. Again, Rayner converted. At 20-12, the Blood & Sand looked home and hosed. With six minutes of normal time remaining, a Vunipola penalty closed the gap to five points. There was time for Rayner to fluff a 77th-minute penalty before that dramatic spell of stoppage time action. On a sunny, cool afternoon, there were plenty supporting Stortford (including the usual rugby union wankers in striped blazers, none of 'em under 65), helping swell the crowd to a decent size.

Cambridge's ground, off Grantchester Road, is a six-pitch set-up. Under a naming rights deal, it is called Volac ('Dairy Nutrition for a Healthier World') Park. Despite the predominantly 'Town' accents of those spectating, 'Gown' is never far away in this city. Indeed, Pembroke College's sports ground is on the other side of narrowing Grantchester Road. Most of the Volac Park first XV pitch's facilities are on the west touchline. These comprise a modern, two-storey clubhouse, which has a likely pretty chilly exposed seating tier at first floor level and, below, a single row of seats, above a couple of steps of terracing. Next to the bar is a club shop, selling a small range of souvenirs. Adjacent to the clubhouse is an even newer building, of trendily distressed wood. It houses the dressing rooms and a well-equipped gymnasium. A small strip of covered terracing is available outside the dressing rooms. Permanent dug-outs and a digital scoreboard are positioned opposite the clubhouse. The pitch, fully-railed, is surrounded by hardstanding (well, aggregate). There aren't any floodlights hence the early start. A pitch immediately to the south of the first XV pitch has training lights. On the second XV pitch, beyond the dug-outs side, Cambridge were crushing Stortford's 'stiffs' 60-14. Plenty of on-site parking, though latecomers have to make do with grass rather than tarmac.

Given this fixture's proximity to Remembrance Day, I decided to spend a couple of pre-match hours exploring nearby Grantchester. Poet Rupert Brooke, a First World War casualty in 1915, lodged in the village's Old Vicarage between 1909 and 1912 whilst a Fellow at Cambridge. In the famous Parish Church of St Andrew & St Mary (of ten-to-three-clock and honey-still-for-tea fame), there was a touching display commemorating Rugby-born Brooke and a handful of local lads killed during the Great War. Brooke succumbed to sepsis en route to the Dardanelles rather than to machine gun fire in a Flanders no man's land. Less poignant was an exhibition in the church about the filming of the TV series Grantchester, something I struggle a little to get into, despite liking crime fiction and loving the presence in the cast of the gorgeous Morven Christie. Brooke, of course, wrote 'The Soldier', a sonnet containing some of the best-loved lines of First World War poetry. Earlier, I had a wander through the delightful Grantchester Meadows, alongside the Cam, doubtless following in Brooke's footsteps. I was 'breathing English air, washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home'. Prosaically, an ugly modern pub in the village is called The Rupert Brooke. I bet he would've been thrilled.

A1 very well behaved in both directions.

I don't read the 'Rugby' Paper (I've never even opened it), though I know a few of this forum's posters do. Could somebody let me know the official attendance figure for this match if it appears in its pages?



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 898; Rugby Union 260; Rugby League 213; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Nov 3, 2018, 9:28 PM)


peter9
Youth Team Regular

Nov 4, 2018, 8:10 AM

Posts: 228
Location: Newton le Willows.
Team(s):

Post #1666 of 1670 (669 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Sat 3rd Nov 2018 - KO 2.30 pm.
Lancs / Cheshire Div 2 - Level 8.
ORRELL 78 .
PORT SUNLIGHT 19.
Venue : Winstanley College , Orrell.
Due to the usual first XV venue being "unavailable" this game was switched to the 2nd XV usual home at Winstanley College , which is just a short walk from Orrell's former home at Edge Hall Road.
Good parking facilities but in truth very little else here including very limited availability of toilets. The pitch although on a slope and with short goal posts is however excellent. Dedicated group of volunteers work hard to ensure that Orrell remain one of the best organised clubs operating at this level.
Superb programme available at £2.50 ( which is in truth probably 50p over priced ) but with Free Admission and the only other match revenue coming from the sale of raffle draw tickets ( today the prize being a bottle of whisky ) it would take a special type of skinflint to begrudge the cost. Certainly one of the better RU productions outside the "top level".
Port Sunlight despite all their honest effort were no match for the Orrell team who scored some impressive tries racing into a 40 points to zero half time lead . With just 10 minutes of the second half gone it was 57 - 0 and a total massacre looked on the cards. In the end Port Sunlight ended up with 2 tries - one converted and a penalty try to notch up 19 points while Orrell ran in 12 tries ( with several being long range crackers ) and 9 conversions for their tally of 78 ponts.
Quite a decent day weather wise in the NW , pitch was dry and superb underfoot for players and spectators alike and despite a good November breeze relatively it wasn't too cold . All very friendly and civilised , was worth a visit .


Mike S
Reserve Team Regular

Nov 4, 2018, 9:52 AM

Posts: 542
Location:
Team(s):

Post #1667 of 1670 (646 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

612 at Cambridge


I am sure you know RU declared attendances are a greater work of fiction than almost anything else


Feversham Lens
First Team Star


Nov 4, 2018, 10:33 AM

Posts: 2824
Location: York
Team(s): Not any more

Post #1668 of 1670 (625 views)
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Re: [Mike S] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Thanks, Mike. Yes, the 'rugby union crowd calculator' is a well known device! That said, 612 at Cambridge yesterday sounds about right. Circa 200 above the club's average attendance.

Wouldn't have minded going to the Eng-NZ RL Test this afternoon but, having watched football at Anfield upwards of 20 times (though never RL), I've decided to save my money and take the sofa seat. I note talk of Super League's 2019 Magic Weekend being at Anfield.



For sporting (and other) images, visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/feversham/

Ground/venue totals: Football 898; Rugby Union 260; Rugby League 213; Cricket 125; Speedway 53; Stock Cars 25; Grasstrack 15; Ice Hockey 15; Cycle Speedway 4; Greyhounds 2.

(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Nov 4, 2018, 10:34 AM)


AndrewG
First Team Star

Nov 5, 2018, 11:41 PM

Posts: 1495
Location: Lancashire
Team(s):

Post #1669 of 1670 (443 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Saturday 3rd November 2018 (ko 1415)
at Castlecroft, Lower Penn
RFU Midland Division Midlands Two West (North) (Level Seven)
Wolverhampton 21 Ludlow 19 (ht 13-19)
Admission - No charge
Programme - 4 pages, free
Attendance - 120 (estimate)

Many posters on here will be familiar with the location of Wolverhampton Rugby Club, as it is located next door to the Castlecroft Stadium home of AFC Wulfrunians. In fact, in an earlier life the stadium was owned by the RFU, and indeed still has the RFU’s red rose logo adorning the wall of its stand. The RFU used the stadium as a regional training centre for schools and referees, but I would not be surprised if Wolverhampton staged some games there - certainly the mass of team photographs on their clubhouse wall include some taken on the stadium pitch. The former Castlecroft Hotel was used by the RFU to provide accommodation - its name is still used for the bus stop that Network West Midlands service 3 links with the town centre, but the building that is passed on the five minute walk along the driveway to the ground is now named Castlecroft House and has been turned into upmarket apartments.

Clubhouse and changing rooms are in adjoined single storey buildings alongside the main pitch. The bar area has plenty of seating even though a pre match meal is taking place. Programmes are scattered around tables for spectators to help themselves - it has the look of an insert that would be placed into an advertising shell, but there was no sign of anything else being available. A couple of real ales available at the bar in the shape of Enville Ale and Three Tuns XXX, whilst the kitchen was open for service from before kick off with hot drinks and a wide choice of hot food on sale.

The main pitch is railed along both sides with dug outs on the far touchline - it is equipped with what I assume are training lights, but lacks a scoreboard. Two further pitches run away at right angles on the far side - neither in use this afternoon - again with training lights. Rising ground provides a slightly elevated viewpoint behind the posts at the southern end, and both ends are pleasantly enclosed by banks of trees, though this afternoon’s gloomiest of grey skies hardly show off the rural setting at its best.

The promotion race in this division looks like being a genuine four or five horse race, and as all the contenders are all clubs I have yet to visit, it is a league I may be seeing more of as the season progresses. These two rivals serve up an excellent contest, though Ludlow looked firm favourites as they scored three tries in the opening twenty minutes to open up a 19-10 lead. The pace of their right winger was causing particular problems, but Wolverhampton amended their tactics to double up on the danger man, before gradually working their way ahead, then surviving some late pressure to hang on to the win. Only the second rugby union game I have seen controlled by a female referee, with the official from Leicestershire having an excellent match.


ciderjon
First Team Star

Nov 11, 2018, 12:30 PM

Posts: 1697
Location: Cymru
Team(s): Bristol Sonics RL (RIP)

Post #1670 of 1670 (178 views)
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Re: [AndrewG] Where are you going - where did you go? RUGBY UNION [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Usk 31 Blaina 3


WRU 3 Division East A
(5th tier of Welsh club rugby)
Attn 82 Admit £3 incl programme
Nov 10 2018 1.30 pm kick off


Two thunderous downpours mid morning made my mind focus on RU. Usk being the first game on tweet I spotted got my vote.

The Red Shed Meadow has been used by Usk since the 19th century, they have owned it outright since 1952. They have never been a really prominent club, although long lasting ( since 1874). This may be the reason for the ground not haven't been developed much.

The pitch is railed along both sides but both ends are of open aspect. There are floodlights ( not needed today, a combination of the early start and beautiful autumn sunshine), and a changing block including a bar. No cover or seats ( apart from smokers corner) excepting a purposely built overhang.

Blaina scored first, that just galvanised Usk who ran away with it. Good first half, including a superb try from Usk's scrum half after a delicate grubber confused the Blaina defence. Second half just dire, Blaina decided they couldn't win the game so went on the biff instead.

Quick home in plenty of time to watch Wales beat Australia on the box, the reason for so many early kick offs today.



Last new Welsh beer: Brew Monster Rye IPA dr


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