Juniors in action

12th April 2011

With the Skolars under 14s having a bye weekend, it left the under 16s and under 18s to fly the flag against Hainault Bulldogs, home and away respectively.

Under 16s

London Skolars were left licking their wounds after another loss this weekend to the Hainault Bulldogs. The Skolars were missing 6 of their key players for this game due to other commitments, and missed the structure that players like Jack Clover have added to the squad this season. Hainault looked strong throughout the game, capitalising early off Skolars mistakes from the kick off.

There was a strong performance from Uzair Abbas again in the loose forward position, and Sahid Kapaka in the centre. Hainault dominated in defence, driving the Skolars forwards back with some strong, aggressive tackling. The Essex outfit looked strong in attack and scored a number of tries off the back of some flowing passing movements.

In the second half the Skolars paid the price for some serious injuries, with 2 players coming off with dislocated shoulders, one with a badly sprained wrist and one with a suspected broken ankle.  The final play of the game saw Aita Kuniyoshi carry 4 Bulldogs players over the line to get the only points scored by Skolars, with the final score 48-4.  The under 16s will enjoy the Easter break, with time to nurse injuries and get key players back from other commitments and will look to strengthen their performance against Eastern Rhinos at home in the cup.

Under 18s

After 2 positive performances against Eastern and Brentwood, London Skolars U18s were looking to maintain their unbeaten run, unfortunately this wasn’t the case. Skolars started well with an early score through Ani Mustafa following up an Iliess Macani kick, converted by Gavin Dilworth. Hainault Bulldogs matched the Skolars score shortly after. The first half remained close thanks to poor completion and some excellent last ditch defending from both sides, this left half time score tied at 12-12 following Iliess Macani’s converted try and a reply from Hainault.

Hainault came out of the second half the more hungry and showed the composure which had been eluding the Skolars, taking the lead by scoring 2 early second half tries. Ibrahim Sesay kept the Skolars in the hunt touching down in the corner to get Skolars within 6 but Hainault ran 3 further tries in taking the final score to 38-16 to Hainault Bulldogs.

The defeat meant that the U18s lost their 100% winning record but there were plenty of lessons learnt. The squad will be looking to regroup over the Easter holidays, and put in some extra training sessions with coach Neil Thorman moving training to twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays, 4.30pm start.

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