Overpowered in Opening League game away to ONs
ONs were too good despite missing 10 players.....
Olney: Euan, Harvey, James E, Cerith, Louis, James K, Ben, Zac, Charlie, Will, Max,
Cameron, Robert, Leo, Teddy
Replacements: Jay, Lawrence, Harry, James T
Olney, with a number of starters missing, had only themselves to blame as they
spotted the home side a healthy lead before showing some passion and commitment
to hold their own in a bruising second half. Despite the effort, they couldn’t stop ONs
running out clear winners in the opening match of the new league season.
On a crisp, sunny morning, Olney started well with some probing attacks. However,
as was to become the pattern of the game, loose play allowed the home side to gain
territory deep into the Olney half. A loose kick from the back of a Olney defensive
scrum 5 gifted the ball straight to the ONs and they took a five point lead. The kick
Olney restarted but ONs strategy to maintain pressure on the visitors paid off as
Olney struggled to get possession outside of their 22. Despite some solid forward
play in a make-shift scrum pack, Olney looked to release pressure after some
defensive scrums in their own half. A relief kick from a visiting side line-out at the
Olney 10 allowed ONs to attack left and their winger went untouched into the corner
to give the home side a 12 point lead. Jay came on for Cerith
Olney found it difficult to establish an attacking thrust to their game and were let
down by loose play. ONs took advantage of the field position and quickly added two
tries down the left wing after an earlier effort was called back for a foot in touch.
Olney were soon 26-0 down.
However, Olney remained undaunted and continued to look to get their attacking
play working effectively. Olney managed to maintain possession in the home side's
half and despite some strong attacking positions with Leo, Cam and Robert making
good runs, they were unable to get their first score. Spoiling play by the home side
and subsequent penalties gave the ref no choice but to yellow card an ONs player.
Olney could not make good their numerical advantage and the half ended before
they could get on the score board.
James T came on for Louis at half time. Olney could not take their momentum into
the second half and another lost ball after some promising work down the middle
gave ONs a chance to kick clear and take advantage of an attacking scrum to score
once more down the left wing and extend their lead. Harry came on for James K.
Olney managed to put together their most potent attacking rugby from the kick off. A
penalty and then a line out a the ONs 5 allowed for an excellent chance to score.
Harvey made a great throw and the forwards used the catch and drive to surge
towards the try line. Pushing left and right, Euan finally took the ball over the line for
Olney's first ( and, unfortunately, only) points of the game. The kick was missed.
Olney continued to recycle the ball from the kick off and used some good team play
to make gains down the wing. However, loose ball let them down and ONs were able
to match Olney in the middle of the pitch. Both teams settled into a period of stop
start play as the ball swapped hands frequently and play was interspersed with
scrums, penalties and line outs between the 22s. ONs finally broke out of this pattern
and used a line out to sneak up the blind side unchallenged for the final score of the
game with the conversion hitting the post. Lawrence came on as the final sub and
some further loose play saw a scrum at half way end the game.
Olney showed some positive attitude in the face of an ONs first half tidal wave and
held their own only being outscored two tries to one in the second half. With players
playing out of position and squad players stepping in for the missing starters, Olney
played with spirit at times and were unfortunate not to add to their score when they
dominated possession. A harsh result, especially in a four game league season, and
no room for further error if Olney look to improve on last year's league position.
Thanks to Jay and Teddy for stepping up from the U15s and thanks to ONs for being