Cock o the North U19 Challenge

Print This Post Print This Post

close
This post was published 5 years 7 days ago.

It has been left on the site for ARCHIVE purposes only and is not actively maintained.

For team and score information please follow this link


Carlisle Colts were given one last opportunity to bring back silverware to the club with an invitation to the Raging Bull Cock-o-the-North Under-19 Challenge Competition hosted by Fleetwood Rugby Union FC.

The competition is based on 4 finals involving the best Senior Colts sides in the North of England, and Carlisle, as the first Cumbrian team to be invited to the event, were drawn against Preston Grasshoppers in the Challenge Bowl final.

[slidepress gallery=’preston-grasshoppers-v-carlisle-colts-13-may-2012′]

On a bright blustery day, Carlisle kicked off into the wind, and were quick to show they were not going to be intimidated by a large physical looking Preston side.

The Carlisle side were looking for every opportunity to move the ball around, probing the Preston defence for weaknesses, and only some robust defence kept the Colts at bay.

The Preston side were unlucky to lose both their Captain and Scrum half in the first quarter of the game as the hard surface took its toll on ankles and knees.

The Colts had most of the territorial advantage in the first half and after some persistent infringements at the breakdown, the Preston side were reduced to 14 players, Captain Mathew Minett slotting home the resulting penalty to put the Carlisle side into the lead.

Despite continuously looking for an opening in the Preston defence, Carlisle were unable to convert the numbers advantage into any further points. With the Preston side returned to full strength they finished marginally stronger and a converted penalty at the end of the first half saw both sides honours even at half time.

Carlisle started as they did the first half and some probing runs down the left hand side from centres Foster and Little resulted in another penalty to the Colts, duly converted by Minett.

The Preston side seemed to get their second wind, and with Carlisle looking just a little tired, they were caught napping as the Preston side took a quick penalty, worked the ball wide to their inside centre who drifted past the Carlisle defence to score under the post.

The Preston side with their tails up now looked a different side, and some tired tackling allowed the same centre to drift wide again, for the second Preston try, crucially not converted.

Now was the time for the players to show their resolve and determination to win. With Carlisle winning the ball from a ruck on half way, fly half Minett skirted round the side and forged down the left.

Meeting the Preston defence he offloaded to McMann and the ball was worked across the back line for winger Elliot McDermot. Still with some work to do he turned on the gas, stepped inside his defender and crossed for a try under the posts.

There then followed a frantic last 5 minutes as Carlisle sought to close the 2 point gap. With the last play of the game, prop Alex Neil was brought down with a high tackle on the Preston 22m line, 10m in from the right touchline. Showing great calm and judging the blustery wind perfectly, Fly half Minett stepped forward and slotted the penalty through the posts to secure the win with the last kick of the game.

This was truly nail biting stuff at the end, but the Colts were worthy of the win to end the season in style. Every player gave 110%, with some playing in more than one position during the course of the game as injuries took their toll.

This was a fitting end to Colts rugby for many of the players and also to the coaching staff of Mike Howe, Paul Minett and Steve Harkins, and we wish them well as they move on to senior rugby next season.

Date:            13.05.2012
Kick off time:        11.30am
Match:            Preston Grasshoppers v Carlisle Colts
Venue:            Fleetwood RUFC
Won / drawn / lost:    Won
Result:            15 v 16
Half time score:    3 v 3

Carlisle scores by:

Tries:  E McDermot
Cons: M Minett
Drops:
Pens: M Minett(3)

Squad
15 Alex Clark
14 Jack Walker
13 Matthew Little
12 Tom McMann
11 Elliot McDermot
10 Matthew Minett (C)
9 Ben Atkinson
1 Alex Neil
2 Adam Robertson
3 Liam Murray
4 Jack Percival
5 Jack Mitchell
6 James Harkins
7 Thomas McCullough
8 Jordan Clements

Replacements
16 Euan Foster
17 John Walker

Report sent in by:        Bill Glendinning