Civil Service RFC Notes: II XV 23 v Ballyclare RFC IV XV 28 Report / Action Shots + Busy Jan for The Colts!!!!!!!!!!!

4 minutes, 13 seconds Read

Service disappointed after loss to Ballyclare

A narrow scoreline will be scant consolation to the Service team who will see this as defeat snatched from the jaws of victory after Ballyclare were reduced to 13 men a little before the hour mark.

The match had started well for Service. After some initial pressure from the strong Ballyclare runners which was well repelled the home team were able to counter attack with ruthless efficiency. Stewart Ferguson broke down the line and played the ball for Chris Burns to fly down his wing, eluding the desperate clutches of his opponents. With defenders cutting out his options he wisely found the support infield of Peter Thompson who showed good hands to play the ball on to Wayne McCormick who showed an electrifying turn of pace to pull clear of a few despairing tackles and set the ball down under the posts. John Byrne’s conversion left the visitors wounded but as ever a beast can be at its most dangerous when wounded and so it came to be as Ballyclare ground the ball slowly but surely down the pitch until they were able to roll over the tryline but without the resulting kick were still short by 7-5.

Service had obviously found courage in their early score and this lent extra vigour to the defence which looked solid but with Ballyclare retaining the ball well they were able to recycle through numerous phases until they were in striking distance. They sucked the Civil defence in to the rucks and mauls and then took their opportunity well as they showed good hands to create a gap and touch down under the posts with the kick making it 12 – 7 after about 20 minutes played. A long penalty from Andrew Johnston reduced the gap but soon after Ballyclare replied with one of their own to maintain the margin. Another Service penalty made the score 15-3 at half time but not before the Ballyclare prop was taken to hospital with a nasty deep gash to the head.

Service seemed to gain some impetus at half time and again set at Ballyclare from the restart with Greg Brown and Davey Harris pressurising well but when the referee ruled that a Service player was going off his feet the penalty slotted home made for a 5 point lead. Service put some good phases of play together but the 14 men of Ballyclare were working hard and after some greedy running by the men in white they cleared their lines well as Service seemed to have missed their opportunity. However when a penalty was given on the 10 yard line Andrew Johnston stepped up and put the long kick over the bars with an excellent effort to put Service within reaching distance of their opponents again.

Then the moment that changed the match. After some fairly scrappy play from both sides a fairly innocuous ruck formed and the Ballyclare number 10 went down having injured his leg. Play was stopped as he took assistance and when he was unable to continue he was helped off by Robin Fleming, a Service player watching on the sideline. This should have given Service a game winning advantage with Ballyclare continuing for the last 20 minutes with only 13 players, however it seemed to galvanise them and the Service players lost a little of the hunger and desire to win, Ballyclare worked extremely hard keeping the ball in tight and rolling in pods but inexplicably given their numbers they were able to work an overlap and, to the dismay of those watching from the side, score in the corner. The difficult kick was missed leaving Service still only one converted try away from their visitors but bad turned to worse soon after. The Ballyclare pack were working overtime,rucking hard, stealing ball and their Service counterparts seemed slow and sluggish in comparison in many cases. Ballyclare rolled a few rucks down the pitch and with the majority of their team getting stuck in they crashed over the line to leave the hosts trailing 28-16 with only 10 minutes remaining on the clock.

Service still had opportunities to reduce the defecit but a combination of poor hands, emmense efforts by the visitors and the wrong choices being taken meant it wasn’t until the last few minutes before they managed to score, working good numbers and a lovely feint from Chris Davey giving hooker JC just enough room to sneak in and dart around under the posts for an easy conversion. It was too little too late however as the last few minutes were scrappy by Service and Ballyclare kicked the ball out to great shouts of elation at their 28-23 win.

Busy January for Colts

The Colts have a busy January after the Xmas break
Sat 5th v Ards home at Stormont – no adult home games that day so why not come and support our youth team – kick-off 11am.

Sat 12th away to Ophir
Sat 19th away to Larne
Wed 23rd away to Ballyclare
Sat 26th away to Instonians

training resumes on Wed 2nd Jan.

all support very welcome

Similar Posts