Under 19

Ajax Cleans Up Rovers

We were fired up, determined and aggressive at the ball and by quarter time the results were heartening.   A 20 point lead against the league leaders and there were good signs all around the ground.

 

Our midfielders were on top and using Pat’s dominance in the ruck we were running the ball forward but it was clear we were up against quality opposition.  The level of pressure applied by both teams was sensational.  We couldn?t get clear breaks and with our forwards under pressure from some quality defenders there were no easy kicks.  It all boiled over a bit just before the break with the umps calling in the captains to urge them to take a bit of the aggro out of the game.  Even our goal ump was under opposition parent pressure! 

 

In the second, against the wind our backs held firm. With Jess Craig contesting every forward thrust by the Jackers and with Tom, Rich, Gossy and Jess playing hard committed footy little was let through.  Up the other end Ned and Mat were doing their best to create some space (and goals) but loose delivery due to the wind was making it hard for them.  At the main break we had a 2 goal buffer but the game was in the balance.  The Jackers running, handballing game was being complemented by some strong marking, which was a surprise to the Rover’s bench. 

 

Half time saw a restrained coach reinforce team rules, reminding them of their commitment to team footy.  On the other hand supporters were enjoying the full canteen that was available and the opportunity to catch up with friends.  Great to see at least one parent from over 18 of the players at the game checking out their son’s on field performances! 

 

While we were confident  in the rooms at the break the third quarter was lukewarm to say the least.  All talk and no action.  Kicking with the breeze we managed 4 points to Ajax’s 1 goal and it was clear we were in trouble for only the second time this year.  Ajax managed to bottle us up in the dead pocket and, despite our best work, we couldn?t break the shackles.  There were some solid performances – Massie was tough and tight on his Dragon’s gun – giving him nothing, likewise Hobes on the wing was cutting his opponent out of the game to great effect.  For the first time for the year we were held goaless in a quarter’s football and the cracks were beginning to appear. 

 

While the umpires put the whistle away for large parts of the game it was frustrating to see some great tackling (by both sides) go unrewarded.  The effect was that the second half began to resemble a rugby league game –  tackle, tackle, tackle, scrum, tackle etc etc.  The free flowing footy that we had been playing over the last month went missing.  As the last quarter wore on the Jackers, with the wind, gradually drew level and then slowly and unconvincingly moved ahead.  It was clear that the home ground advantage was in play as they moved their players to take advantage of the ground’s odd shape.  To our credit we never gave in and fought out what has been the match of the year. 

 

Let’s look forward to the rematch down at the Boss on a fine day and see how they cope with our running and long kicking to position game which was largely absent on Saturday.

 

Scores

HR      4.1     7.3     7.7     9.7     61

Ajax    2.5     5.7     6.8     10.11  71

 

Best   Massie, Atkins, Lovig, Naulty, Howe, Ivory, Stevens

Goals Stevens 2, Turner 2, Massie 1, Culvenor 1, Fallon 1, Innes 1, Jewel 1

 

NEXT WEEK

Beaumaris at Home

 

DUTIES

GOAL:           JIM CLARKE

TIME             ROB IVORY

BOUND          JOE NAULTY

SCOREB         DAN LEWIS et al

 

AFTER MATCH

 

The bar will be open and food available.

 

All parents and supporters are urged to come into the rooms after the game and be part of the celebrations. 

 

Quonny will make the presentations about 15 minutes after the game ends so call in and become part of the Rover’s family.  Bring the dogs and the other kids and make it a big day!

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