U14 VX Match Report vs Limavady
By Stephen Walker
U14 Match Report
City of Derry U14 XV Match Report
(vs Limavady U14 XV, 17/11/18)
City of Derry 40 – 5 Limavady
Having been unfortunate in their last number of bouts, the Derry boys have been working hard in training, with coaching staff reflecting on their recent performances, focusing on being clinical in order to not let another victory slip away from their grasp. This proved beneficial as the boys looked in much better form than last week’s incredibly close match. While the boys were missing many players due to injury and other reasons, they were determined as ever to ensure a win.
As Limavady struggled for numbers, two Derry players, Jamie Walsh and Daniel Grace, magnanimously stepped up and offered their services to their rivals in order to allow the game to proceed, also allowing them much more game time to test their skills.
An early injury reflected last week’s match, this time a leg injury which pulled Donnachadh Roarty out of play for some time to allow recovery. However, remaining enthusiastic to revisit play later, he returned to top form in influencing major parts of the match.
From the offset Derry took ownership of the game, ensuring quick formation behind the breakdown which allowed quick and fluid open play for much of the meeting. Marc Craig, captaining again today in his new position of inside centre, displayed great skill by weaving his way through tight but ill-prepared defence, to run his way through the whole way to the try line, even once performing a somersault to add his points in style. In a selfless display, Craig offered reward to his support runners throughout the match by offloading the ball to allow them too opportunity to score, albeit not always successfully. One highlight of the match was seeing the ever-committed Brian Mulli receive the ball to touchdown for his first try for the Green and Black.
The support and teamwork present in this team was evident and successful throughout the match, as player awareness in both attack and defence was rock solid. Fechin Kelly displayed his usual quiet confidence and endeavour as he battled for every ruck, ball and yard, which resulted in deservedly receiving Man of the Match for his efforts. Nial Quigley and Zac Deanes put in their usual hard shift in defence, never giving up in attempting to close down opposition with ball, even in the face of almost guaranteed tries. Limavady found themselves lucky to pass the try line only once after a scrum, where they took advantage of the open spaces out wide created by the drop in numbers.
Deanes, likely the tallest player on the pitch on the day, was the unfortunate recipient of a booking for what was deemed a high tackle, misjudged due to the vast difference in size between the two players.
Another highlight of the match included the returning of Chris McCann, who marked the occasion with his blistering pace and brilliant footwork as he dribbled the ball down the wing in a spectacle that resembled a La Liga match more than it did a rugby match, which was rounded off brilliantly by Nial Quigley who took full advantage by touching down seconds later.
Final Score: City of Derry 40 – 5 Limavady
The 14s proved their abilities on the day, however challenges are still to come; with a rest from play next week, in a fortnight Derry travel to Coleraine in what promises to be a very difficult contest. The boys will need to continue their commitment to training, working even harder to continue in this trend.