The Stags entertained Old Red’s 2nd XV at The Pit on Saturday who were currently sat one position below the home team in the league standings.

The game got underway a little late due to Old Red’s forgetting to bring the team kit with them but they amends by arriving with four in the front row!

A brief shower just before the game made conditions slippery for both sides which proved throughout the game with many handling errors from both teams.

Reds were gifted a penalty after just 3 mins and perfectly timed gust of wind swept across the goal posts to force the ball wide.The Stags cleared there lines with kick over the top which was caught by the Red’s winger who managed to evade a couple of tackles down the wing and score the first try of the game. 0-5

From the kick off The Stags forced an error in The Reds 22 and were awarded a scrum. Red’s were by far the larger pack but you’ll be surprised what our svelte young men can do in the set piece as we held our own scrums well and this allow enough space and time for Sam Lewis to get the ball out Will Hopkins who manged to dance his way through forwards and score Burnham’s first try. 5-5.

Smoked Bacon, Birkan Gunduz if your wondering who I’m referring too, returned to the fold after his Cardiff shenanigans the week before and was superb throughout the game with ball in hand and took the ball over the game line at every opportunity.

The first half was full of handling errors from both teams due to the conditions meaning the possession was exchanged on several occasions which disrupted our game plan but shortly before half time a penalty was awarded for not rolling away and Tim Piper, leading scorer I’ll have you know, gave the home side a 8-5 lead at Half Time.

Coach Kevin Inalls worked his magic with some verbal diarrhoea to the players at half time and shortly into the second half made some changes with Sam & Tom Wall coming on for Havercroft and our over 40 robot Donk. 
The two Walls linked up well throughout the second half and some direct running from Sam Wall gave a good platform for the forwards to start clicking.

Penalty advantage was given for off side and Piper set off but was tackled short of the line and Dan Berry, who was in support, gathered the ball from the base of the ruck, saw the gap, took a few strides and stretched for the line to score our second try of the game. 13-5.

The forward began to play simple direct rugby and went through the phases producing some quick ball for the backs then Hopkins did what he does best and took the ball at pace to score his second try with Piper adding the extra’s 20-5.

Old Red’s began to feel the pressure and The Stags began to play some open rugby. Fullback, Alex Watkins, caught a clearing kick on the half way and at speed opened the Red’s defence, created the overlap himself and with only one player to beat he glanced to his left, spotted our loose head prop, Stefan Pierce on the wing in support but a poor pass to Stefan was the end of probably the best move of the game. I will just add that Stefan is only the third speedy prop I, and many others, have witnessed out on the wing and dam that boy can move rapidly for a prop! The other two I was referring too are past players Ollie Streeter & Sam Coles.

The stags spent many minutes deep in the Reds 22. At one point, Tom Stevens stole the ball at the lineout, a good 5m drive from the forward, then The Walls were off at pace linking well with each other and Sam was brought down just short of the line.

Several minutes later Piper popped up from somewhere and scored (sorry I missed that phase of play) and slotted over his own try to put The Stags 27-5.

From the kick off, Reds put some pressure back on the home side and at one point, Jude Donnelley & Captain Kecks had a leg each of the Red’s prop to ensure he wasn’t going any further. Red’s managed to score a consolation try late on in the game and the final ended up 27-10.

MOTM was Sam Wall who made an impact in the loose, made ground and carried the ball well.

Next Saturday we take a short trip up the A38 to Yatton. Kick will be 2.30pm now that the clocks have changed.

See you there!

#stags #wegoagain


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