After his side were crowned WRU Regional Age-Grade Champions last night, head coach of the Ospreys U18s Kevin James reflects on a hard-fought victory to end a winning season.
“Obviously we’re over the moon to get the win last night” said James.
“The boys have worked extremely hard, not just in the last five games but during all the training sessions throughout the season.
“It goes to show how far the boys have come since the WRUSuperSix back in October where we looked as though we would struggle going into these fixtures, we didn’t manage to pick up a win.
“But all credit to the coaching system we have in place at the Ospreys with the development of the boys. Everyone’s played a huge part in the growth of this team, the coaching staff and everyone behind the scenes. Our key message heading into the competition was we’re all as one together all coaches, staff, and players.
“It’s important that we’ve bonded as a group and have been able to enjoy the down time but when asked to work everyone must switch on and apply themselves in an elite fun but professional environment.”
The young Ospreys picked up five wins, three of which with a bonus point, a notable achievement for the squad, who all played a part with quick turnarounds between games. James added:
“We’ve used 37 players in all, which we utilised between games due to injury but also to make sure all the boys were given an opportunity to play.
“Now we have nine of them who are looking at going on to represent Wales in the internationals so it’s a great stepping stone for the boys, and a great place for them to learn and develop their own game and have the experience of being part of the Ospreys structure.
“Working with the additional support from the likes of Tom Habberfield, Duncan Jones and Andrew Bishop has been a great opportunity for the boys as well as our great core coaching team of Ian Jones and Nicky Roberts.”
Speaking about Tuesday night’s nail biting win at Sardis Road, James acknowledged how close a shave it was in the end as the Eyasses survived a late scare that could have seen victory been ripped away from them. James said:
“I was pulling my hair out during that last minute. After being the more dominant side all game, we deserved that win. But all credit to the Dragons they played a great game of rugby and it was much closer than the game against them last week.
“I thought we played an exciting game of rugby and thought the boys were the better side despite the scare in the end though. They thoroughly deserved to win with the performances they’ve put in and are worthy winners.”