U16 Dorset & Wilts Cup Semi-final
Wimborne's sons shine the brightest in tense local derby
Pools 1 and 3 in this years cup were all Dorset affairs, so the winners of this semi-final would determine the Dorset champion to face the winners of the two Wiltshire pools. The match would be played in beautiful spring sunshine and a gentle breeze, great conditions for rugby. Bournemouth are tough opponents with a tall, heavy pack and quick, organised backs. From the kick off they showed their intent and formed a maul which drove close to the line forcing an attacking lineout. The catch and drive was well formed and they drove over for an early unconverted score. An rapid response was needed to quell the nerves, and just three minutes later, excellent continuity led to an opening for Ethan to round the defence and open the minstermen's account. More sustained pressure led to another try just 10 minutes later when Johannes spotted a gap in the fringes and ploughed through to score under the posts. Jake converted to take the score to 5-12 up after 15 minutes. It would be another 20 minutes before another score. Bournemouth came back strongly in the second period of the the first half and camped out in our 22 for the last 5 minutes. The pressure eventually told with their heavy pack relentlessly picking and driving on the try line, crossing the whitewash on the stroke of halftime. Unconverted, the match was delicately balanced at halftime with a slender lead of just 2 points for Wimborne.
The second half started in similar fashion to the first, but the men in black were able to withstand the early pressure this time and move the ball into their opponents half. Great work from the forwards to secure clean ball allowed the backs to execute a flowing passing move for Ethan to finish it off in style. Converted by Jake, Wimborne now had a 9 point cushion, however Bournemouth came straight back and scored a converted try to cut the lead to just 2 points again. Never a dull moment, the drama and intensity was building to a crescendo. A scrum on the hosts 22 gave Johannes a chance to attack the blindside, and linking with Jake, gave Jude a clear run to the corner to outpace the defence. Unconverted, the lead was now back up to 7, a tense final 10 minutes ensued. Bournemouth were straining to exert some dominance and find chinks in the Wimborne armour, and led by their excellent fly half, were moving the ball wide where possible. Wimborne held their lines and forced the attackers to try one adventurous pass too many, Dan read the play, intercepted and took off like a scalded cat to run it in from the halfway line. Joyous scenes on the touchline and with Jake converting to take the score to a more comfortable 17-31, there was just the last minute to play and no way back for the home team. Although Bournemouth added a try in overtime, the game ended 22-31.
It's now off to play Chippenham in the cup final at the end of the month. Well done all the boys, an excellent effort to reach our third final in four years.
Morgan, Noah, Lorne, Cameron, Wiggy, Barnaby, Alex, Johannes, Jake, Ben, Leo, Dan, Charlie, Robert T., Ethan, Dec, Harrison, Harry, Arthur, Connor, James, Jude
Scorers: Tries: Ethan (2), Johannes, Jude, Dan
Conversions: Jake (3)