Blakey’s round-up of the 2018/19 seasonTOUR:
As you know Old Es this year went to Toulouse and firstly a very big thanks to Alex Faure for all his help in making this Tour one to remember. He now knows what a difficult job it can be trying to keep things moving in the right direction for 30+ tourists!!!
The weekend was full of incident starting with the tale of Perkins Bag right through to the Wiz incident (he’s absolutely fine now!), and the 7 missing the return flight.
We played the Airbus ARLE XV at the TOAC Club on the Friday night, a really competitive game which we narrowly won. Thanks also to Ronan Le Fur for supporting. More than that I am of course sworn to secrecy but the Tour Virgins acts on Friday night were a real highlight. Big thanks to everyone involved in the organisation and pulling off a great tour. Ben I hope the headache is better!
This year the Annual Dinner was held at the Convivio Café/Bar and was attended by 51 Old Es. Notably in attendances were Old Boys, John Leonard from New Zealand, Steve Tilley, Marsh & Lloyd Price and many more. Big thanks to David Morgan and the crew at Convivio for all the hard work and making the evening a really successful end of season celebration.
Whilst maybe we didn’t have as much to celebrate on the field as last year Chairman Cheek confirmed that we had indeed missed relegation and remain in Glos 1 to fight another year!
I’m pleased to say that everyone respected the premises and no paintings went missing so maybe Morgs will allow us to return next year – just need a new microphone!!
THE ANNUAL AWARDS WENT AS FOLLOWS:
Players’ Player: Will Patterson Player of the Year: Will Tobin
Young Player: Yannick Underwood Most Improved: Dom Horn
Clubman: Charlie Balfour Character of the Year: Greg Foord
Those who played 20+ games in the 2018/19 season are also recognised:
Dom Horn, Greg Foord, Miles Pakeman, Will Tobin, Yannick Underwood, Alex Matthews and Oli Clapp.
They represent a real commitment to the club and something that all players need to aspire to next season if we are to succeed.
If you want to play in the Old Es’ Golf Day and haven’t yet booked yourself in please contact Phil Cheek. Saturday 25th May at Thornbury Golf Club – breakfast and coffee from 0915, lunch followed by, at the end of the day, viewing of the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Semi Final from 3pm, Cost £30 – contact Phil asap.
Summer Working Parties - Club Improvements:
A lot is planned to be done at the club during the summer months to help improve the club with a fair bit of rearranging. Big thanks to the Facilities team for working on the planning. News of when there will be Working Parties at the Club will be announced soon and of course many hands make light work so please get along and help. Wishing you all a great summer and see you soon. "Blakey"
Saturday April 13th 2019: Old Elizabethans 1st XV away to CirencesterThe 1st XV Squad: Olly Scholey, Will Tobin, Sam Collins, Dom Horn, Greg Mornin, Matt Bailey, Yannick Underwood, Oli Adams, Jamie Halpin, Will Appleton, Blake Knowlson, Charlie Balfour, Alex Brook, Ben Simmons, Oli Clapp, Pete Beale, Joe Singleton, Greg Foord
Match Report for the last game of the season
For the first time this season Old Es were unable to field a full front row and therefore wanted uncontested scrums, so had no option other than to concede the Win to Cirencester even before a ball had been kicked.
Despite this Old Es fielded a full 18 man squad and a big thanks to everyone for turning out. A special mention for Oli Adams, not sure whether this was officially your debut for the first XV but nevertheless Oli showed great promise for the future and was a bright spot for what was otherwise a bit of a dismal afternoon.
Es started the game with two penalty kicks neither of which reached touch – something to bear in mind for next season, these little moments can have a big impact. Cirencester (hereafter referred to as Cs) scored their first try within ten minutes and it was a well-deserved start for them (7-0). For Es, Sam Collins started brightly with some excellent tackles and there were some good runs from Will Tobin and Oli Adams. A C’s Yellow card for a high tackle was the first of two such events for them during the game. This gave a window of opportunity for Es with Oli Adams driving for the line and flicking the ball to Will Appleton Es scored a well-deserved try (7-7).
In defence Es were looking a little frail except in the centre where Alex Brook put in some great crunching tackles throughout the game. Indeed the good spell for Es actually saw them take the lead for a few minutes, Charlie Balfour flicking the ball behind the tackle to Alex Brook – nothing was going to stop him as he placed the ball down (7-12).
Cirencester came storming back though and scored a couple of tries before half-time and led at the turn around (17-12).
Es struggled in the second half with missed tackles, not looking after the ball in tackles, going it alone without support but despite C’s dominance in the second half the Es’ spirit was there for all to see. Will Appleton, and Oli Adams continued to impress in attack and defence and along with Alex Brook were the three shining lights of a dismal second half.
At the end of the game Es gained parity in the area of the uncontested scrums (words of Andy Brook) but gained little parity elsewhere and Cs ran away with it in the second half with a final score of (58-12). It’s been a long season but there are things to look forward to for the 2019/20 season.
April 6th - Ladies Day and two Match Reports:
Firstly on behalf of Old Elizabethans a big thank you to everyone that helped in the organisation of Ladies Day but also to those 6 or 7 of us that got down to the club on Thursday night to fix the 1st XV Posts that had snapped and blown down in recent winds!
Also a very big thank you to Robin Cherry for helping with retrieving of balls from the ditch, the hedge and the next door football pitch. This is a really important job so thanks Robin.
So Ladies Day saw a great turn out of beauties, male and female but mainly female! There was a huge crowd boosted by both the fact that there were two home games this season and the fact that Cheltenham North brought with them a good number of supporters. The fact that the bar and the BBQ sold out a few times was testament to what was a fantastic day.
Saturday April 6th 2019:
Old Elizabethans 2nd XV at home to Wotton-Under-Edge
The 2nd XV Squad:
Blake Knowlson (Capt), Ellis Simin, Jack Forrester, Tom Whitehouse, Will Appleton, Max Carpenter, Henry Edwards, Leo De Carlo, Oli Adams, Teddy Bristow, Ollie Cherry, Tom Elstob, Charlie Balfour, Tom Holliday, Gwilym Watkins, Max Widmer, Callum Gibbons, Tomos Morgan, Lucas Sadler, Tom Winwood, Henry Cheek, Charlie Crumblehom, Marcus Boxalle + a few others…
Wotton-Under-Edge arrived with 10 players so it was great that Old Es had sufficient players to give them 5 and make a 15 aside game still. A big thanks to all those who played their part by spending some time playing for W-u-E. It was great to see the QEH players, Henry, Charlie, Marcus and Lucas playing, all had a fine game and in fact it was only 5 minutes into the game when scrum half Lucas Sadler opened the scoring with a fine effort. Max Carpenter was once again running round like a headless chicken putting in some crunching tackles (he is needed in the 1st XV I think!).
Then another of the QEH lads, Marcus Boxall scored a great try, before Teddy Bristow lit up the afternoon with a great solo effort and try and conversion (17-0).
Tom Whitehouse a great presence for both Old Es and W-u-E scored the fourth try for Old Es and conversion to make it (24-0).
The try of the afternoon though, came from my fellow second row partner of old making his comeback and looking great, Dan Werz burst through the defence and went over under the posts (29-0).
Just before half time W-u-E got back into the game with a fine try supplied by Tom Whitehouse (scored for both teams!), (29-7).
The Second half was a little more interesting in as much as it was more level with W-u-E playing some good rugby and Will Appleton scored an early second half try and conversion to bring the score back to (29-12).
However Es got under way in the second half when Es had a guest appearance from Will Mortimore who stole through to score a try (34-12).
Jay playing his first game (normally plays with a round ball –Basketball!) was starting to get stuck in with some good runs. Then the Old Es Pin Up player of Henry Cheek scored a superb try, followed by another by Teddy Bristow, before W-u-E scored two late consolation tries both through Max Carpenter to make the final score (46-24).
A really entertaining game so well done to everyone involved and hope it’s not too long before we see you all back in an Old Es’ shirt.
Man of the Match: Oli Adams
Saturday April 6th 2019:
Old Elizabethans 1st XV at home to Cheltenham North
The 1st XV Squad:
Greg Foord, James Davis, Alex Matthews, Will Patterson, Dom Horn, Matt Bailey, Yannick Underwood, Will Tobin, Will Mortimore, Dom Swann, Peter Foley, James Halpin, Jacob Rawlinson, Tom Jenner, Matt Carr, Sam Collins, Greg Morning, Lloyd Robling.
It was a hot afternoon and Es would need all their dreams to come true to turn other promotion pushing Cheltenham North, but got off to a flying start with a great combination between Tom Jenner and Yannick Underwood before Yannick chipped the ball forward and Tom ran through to score his debut try for the club, conversion by Dom Swann (7-0).
It wasn’t long though before Cheltenham North got into the game and with a great break down the wing scored a hotly disputed try in the corner. The linesman was consulted by the referee but the linesman stood firm despite abuse from the Old Es' team and the try was awarded “maybe the referee should have gone to Specsavers” but the linesman got this decision 100% correct! (7-5)
The pressure from CN then mounted and they scored four more tries in quick succession with Es seemingly unable to cope with the 6ft 6 inch centre (man mountain) bursting through the centre and the score at half time stood at (7-29).
Es' scrum was struggling once again to win clean ball and many first time tackles were missed. Es were being sucked into having 2 or 3 players make a tackle which inevitably was giving CN a lot of space and it wasn’t long before they scored a further try and conversion (7-36). This was followed by another try not converted to take their lead to (7-41).
Many spectators were saying that this was the best side we had played all season. However, in the last quarter of the game Es somehow seemed to tap into their reserves had the better of this 20 minute spell resulting in a try from Man of the Match Will Patterson, converted by Dom Swann and the whistle went with the final score at (14-41).