1stXV Rugby Tour 2017

 

For the 14th year, the 1stXV headed down to the North of England for their annual rugby tour and, once again, it was a tremendous success both on and off the field. As always, we were very well hosted by Giggleswick, Ampleforth and Sedbergh and seeing all the boys from both teams sitting down afterwards enjoying match tea and each others’ company is lovely to see, and far more important than the result of a game of rugby.

 

On the field, the boys were magnificent. There were two nail biting matches with Giggleswick and Ampleforth, where the result could have gone either way as the boys were up against big, physical sides, but they rose to the occasion and fought so hard, fully deserving their victories which brought a lot of smiles to them as well as the massed ranks of parents on the touchline…..a sigh of relief from me too it has to be said. To win those games showed just how far this group of players have come since September: blessed with no great size or pace, they have worked so hard and their commitment and heart cannot be faulted. I was so pleased of them and very proud of what they achieved.

 

 

On the Monday, we came up against a talented and strong Sedbergh back line, and although we were outgunned by their slick three quarters, we fought right to the end, and seeing the forwards to continually punch holes up the field, driving hard, recycling time after time was impressive. Heads stayed up and the opposition coach was hugely complimentary about the boys’ work rate, their commitment and never say die attitude; we look forward to welcoming Sedbergh to Cargilfield on Friday for their reciprocal visit.

 

 

So all in all, another highly successful and enjoyable few days. The boys were an absolute delight to be with: their impeccable good manners were commented upon by other guests in the hotel, as well as by the hotel staff, and we were made to feel very welcome at the Rendez Vous in Skipton, where we have been visiting for 14 years.

 

 

A sense of togetherness, of real teamwork and a desire to improve and not let anyone down, of bravery and total commitment to the cause epitomises this group of boys; what they lack in size and speed, they more than make up for with these other qualities and the tour of 2017 can rank amongst the best of those that have gone before. Well done boys, and thank you for being such terrific company!  Also, a big thank you to the army of parents who also came down to support the boys – it was a lot of fun, as always!

 

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