This was a similar encounter to the previous one in September with the Blues North really providing the Young Ospreys forwards with a challenge that will help develop their defensive skills, particularly at the breakdown area
. The Blues North work from a solid scrum and a driving lineout and look to take the game to their opponents through a driving maul and “pick and drive” tactics. If you don’t have the heart for a fight and cave in to this tactical option then they (Blues North) certainly have the capabilities to destroy their opponents. However, the Young Ospreys were up for a fight and only allowed the Blues North a single score when No 8 Daniel Lewis scored a try from a 5 metre scrum early in the 2nd half. No one person epitomised the fighting spirit more so than the Young Ospreys smallest forward open side flanker Ben Howe; he was a tower of strength at the break down and took on his opponents carrying them and the ball to gain yardage on numerous occasions.
If Howe was the choice of the forwards then centre Kristian Phillips was certainly the backs choice. He opened the Young Ospreys account by scoring a try when he outpaced the North’s defence after being given the ball from a scrum 30 metres from the try line; similarly when a Young Osprey move broke down in midfield and the North’s defence lost its shape, Phillips was hanging back with enough depth to pounce on the ball and burst 40 metres through a dumbstruck defence. With future energy supplies being in short stock the National Grid should look at ways in which they could harness some of the “gas” that Phillips seems to have in abundance; his hat trick try again showed his enormous potential as he outpaced everyone to score in the corner. The other two tries that were scored on the evening were the result of team effort as Phillips and co centre Ashley Beck run a “slice” (switch) in midfield and outside half Daniel Bigger picked out Beck: he then showed great determination to run in a try from 30 metres with defenders being brushed aside. Also when the ball went to replacement wing Dean Williams he showed there is a great deal of pace throughout the team as he sped clear on the outside, before intelligently “pulling back” a pass to supporting full back Scott Hancock; Hancock then finished off the movement with possibly the try of the night. Bigger also kicked a penalty and conversion which gave the Young Ospreys a 30 points to 5 victory. This victory almost confirms their appearance in the Reebok Final but with two games remaining they need to remain focussed.
Next up for the squad is a development game against the Bridgend and District under 16 team on Wednesday, 8th March at South Wales Police RFC, 7.15 kick off. Also we wait in anticipation the announcement of the Wales under 16 team to play away against Italy March 11th; hoping for a large representation in the 22 man squad.