Vectis took 14 boys to Petersfield for the eagerly anticipated Hampshire festival
Awful weather most of the day but all the boys played well
A damp day and a heavy muddy pitch greeted us and further news was the no show of Guernsey meaning only 4 teams were in our pool.
First up were new opposition to us in Fordingbridge, and we quickly dominated play which enabled Hugh to scoot over for a brace of tries, one certainly showing his sidestep prowess. Unfortunately we switched off for the last minute of the game and Fordingbridge scored twice as the game ended 2-2.
This was a wakeup call and the bruising Portsmouth team were next up and we promptly dispatched them 3-0 with Hugh again on the scoresheet and two for the speedster Edward. This performance showed that when we play as a team we really are a quality outfit, so we must remember each of our roles on the field.
Our final game of the pool was against arguably the pool favourites, Alton and to be fair they showed their class as they beat us 4-0. We just have to remember to spread the defence across the pitch in a flat line and keep the faster players on the outside. And then in attack get more depth. With that being said beating Alton will be our focus for the team over the next 12 months, then we truly know we can win the festival next year.
This left us second in our pool and gave us the semi-final of the Plate against old foes Havant.
Being brutally honest I was so proud of the boys as they went toe to toe against a physically bigger team in the mud for the entire match. We had several chances with an amazing Rhys pass to Hugh nearly resulting in a score, Archie being hauled down just shy of the whitewash and Edward Flying around a couple of Havant boys and just being scragged by the last defender. In the end a dubious refereeing decision at a scrum which was ours was the only difference in the two teams and you could tell by the way Havant celebrated that they knew they were in a contest and were arguably fortunate to go through to the Final.
Special mention goes to Thomas as he had probably his best day in a Vectis shirt and was everywhere and to Theo for battling on throughout with a badly bruised finger.
Overall it was great to see the boys maturing as a team, showing great camaraderie and sportsmanship and sticking at it on a long day in testing conditions. I really look forward to seeing these lads progress to 15 man rugby.