The Young Ospreys under 16's get off to a fine start with victory over the Dragons.
Opening match success for Young Ospreys
The Young Osprey under 16 team started this fixture against the Dragons as if it was the third half of their recent match against the London Premiership Academies. They moved the ball swiftly through phases and eventually were able to take advantage of their control over the game when centre Rhys Llewellyn crossed in the corner for their opening score. They then showed great character and skill to deny the Dragons try scoring opportunities as they defended their try line as if their lives depended on it. There were also a few difficult chances that the Young Ospreys failed to take before No 8 Scott Hicks picked up from a scrum 10 metres out and barged over for a thoroughly deserved 10 points to nil lead on 25 minutes.
Unfortunately for Hicks this was his last action of the game as he had a recurrence of an old shoulder injury and was replaced by Aled Thomas. After Hicks’ departure the light drizzle that had been constant throughout the first 25 minutes got worse and with it went the chances of a spectacle as both sides found it difficult to control a slippery ball. However, spectacles are much to be admired as a spectator; but players need to learn how to adapt to conditions and the Young Ospreys will rue the fact that they didn’t relieve pressure by kicking to clear their lines and also using a variety of kicking for the corner and high kicks when in attack. The Dragons did adapt slightly better to the conditions and used the high kick and rolling mauls to good effect. Unfortunately for them a committed and well organised Young Osprey defence only allowed them a penalty kick for full back Joseph Evans; the Young Ospreys therefore ran out winners by 10 points to 3.
One incident that really got the crowd to its feet was when replacement wing Georgie Rees chased his clearance kick and as his opposite number attempted to gather the ball and move away, Rees up ended him with a tackle out of the grid iron manual. Hopefully this sort of spirit and attitude is what will carry the group forward to a successful season.