Saracens come out on top at U16 level

The Ospreys U16's just fell short as they lost 8-0 to a well drilled Saracens team at Llandarcy yesterday.

A drop goal from outside half Tim Bitrim and a try from Harry Hutchings separated the two sides at the full time whistle. The defences of both sides prevented a high scoring game despite a lot of free flowing rugby being played.

Saracens started off on the front foot, threatening with the ball in hand. The London based outfit went through quick phases but were frequently thwarted by the last ditch tackling of Morgan Jones and Stuart Nicholas

The Ospreys continued to frustrate the visitors with their solid defensive work and Saracens looked unable to gain any penetration. Tim Bitrim, the Saracens outside half, showed maturity beyond his years to take advantage of his team’s territory and slot a sweetly struck drop-goal.

Glimpses of what the Eyasses were capable of were starting to be displayed, with the youngsters starting to break the line and link up with one another. Despite being on the front foot, the Ospreys failed to capitalise with Saracens restricting their possession by turning ball over whenever they looked dangerous.

Saracens were quick to relieve themselves with kicks into their opponents twenty two, helping them gain valuable territory.  Ospreys struggled to retain their lineout ball and the visitors looked to exploit their weakness.

The loose ball was gathered by Saracens who looked to add to their 3 points in the Ospreys half. Saracens used width to attack but Ospreys drift defence and last ditch tackles helped keep the scores as they were.

 Not giving up easily, Saracens continued to pile on the pressure and when the home team conceded a penalty, Saracens took a quick tap before sending Harry Hutching crashing over from close range.  Bitrim failed to add the extras.

Immediately, the Ospreys came back and looked to score a try of their own. From the back of a scrum, slick hands sent winger, Regan Grace, hurtling down the line before he was bundled into touch.

As the second half started, numerous changes had been made to the Ospreys team and they all looked eager to impress. The home team started to gain yards with every carry, but Saracens defence stood firm as the ball was shipped out wide.

Saracens looked to inflict more damage on the young Ospreys as they sliced their way through the defence through Ross Ozongwu before he was hauled to the ground by Owen Watkin. The determination in the Ospreys tackling continued to be evident with the whole putting in vital hits till the end.

The Ospreys struggled to get a hold of the ball and frequent infringement cost them valuable territory but their scrummaging started to gain the upper hand. This provided the Eyasses with a platform, earning penalties and threatening from quick taps.

With the final whistle beckoning, Ospreys kept the ball in hand and Watkin stepped his way through a gap before subtly offloading to his centre partner, Jones, who lost the ball with the line at his mercy.

The game finished 8-0 to the visiting team but the Ospreys can be happy for with their efforts and will continue to improve before the start of the new season.

Eyasses Head Coach David Jones said:

“We were up against a good side today but considering the amount of time we’ve been together, the things we worked on went very well.  I’ve got now doubt that our boys are a good side, we just need to bring them together as a team now. We’ve got the best regional record in the competition at this age group, the boys have had a little taste and now we’re looking forward to it”