Conversions: Lloyd Evans (4)
Penalties: Lloyd Evans (2)
Will Hayward (Hartpury College); Elliott Creed (Chosen Hill School), Ollie Thorley (Chelt College), Charlie Norman (Marlborough College), Robson Skipsey (St Peters); Lloyd Evans (Dean Close), Farrell Gwilliam (Hartpury College); Will Goodrick-Clarke (Chelt College) Cameron Jones (Hartpury College) Jack Spencer (Hartpury College); Harry Wilson (Hartpury College) Tom Lushington (Chelt College); Tyler Jerrum (Hartpury College), Joe Mullis (Chosen Hill School) Will Safe (Hartpury College)
Morgan Bottrill (Hartpury College), Ellery Millar (Hartpury College), George Carrie (Pates Grammar), Gareth Jones (Hartpury College), Toben Ronald (Wycliffe College), Harry Bassett (Warwick School), Ross Preedy (Sir Thomas Rich's), Harry Priestner (Dean Close)
They were helped in their quest when straight from the kick off Newcastle failed to judge the swirling wind and were brought back for the ball not travelling 10 metres. Gloucester were on the front foot and quickly found their stride, with captain and number eight Will Safe leading the way with some effective carries, helping to give Gloucester front foot ball and allowing them to set their talented back line loose.
After a sustained spell of possession and some strong running from the England U18 pairing of centre Ollie Thorley, and fullback Will Hayward, a clever piece of link play from scrum half Farrell Gwillam allowed wing Elliott Creed to go over for the first try of the game to give Gloucester a 5-0 lead after 15 minutes.
This was quickly followed up by some magic from full back Hayward, after some well worked lineout ball once again gave Gloucester a go forward platform, Hayward sliced open the Falcons defence to score under the posts, which was in turn converted by fly half Lloyd Evans to take the lead to 12-0 with 20 minutes gone.
Gloucester continued to exert pressure and were unlucky to have a well constructed multi phase try ruled out on 25 minutes for crossing, although a penalty for a previous offside was awarded which Evans cooly slotted over to take the score to 15-0 to the visitors. Their explosive start did not end there, and Gloucester began to get a strangle hold on the game with Gwillam and Evans pulling the strings at 9 and 10, and the front 5 having an impact with strong carrying in mid field. On the 30 minute mark an attacking move that started from a kick receipt deep in the Gloucester 22 finished in tight head prop Jack Spencer adding his name to the score sheet with the conversion taking the score to 22-0.
Newcastle kept up the fight, piling pressure back onto Gloucester and managed to score 2 well worked tries of their own before half time, with a powerful run through the heart of the Gloucester defence, and a superbly weighted cross field kick to touch down in the corner, both of which were converted to take the half time score to 22-14.
The second half started as the first ended, with Newcastle piling the pressure on their visitors with some high class tactical kicking exchanges which forced Gloucester to defend for long spells inside their own half.
Newcastle chipped away, knowing that another score would take them within touching distance of getting what seemed an unlikely victory in this opening encounter. Their hard work paid off, as Gloucester were penalised for offside at the back foot of a ruck inside their 22 and the Falcons reduced the score line further to 22-17 with 13 minutes left on the clock.
Gloucester made several changes, and Morgan Bottrill (hooker), Harry Bassett (scrum half) and Ross Preedy all had an instant impact reviving the pace of Gloucester's attack. From a lineout on the left of the field a well worked backs play lead to centre Ollie Thorley unlocking the Falcons defence to touch down and give some much needed breathing space to the young Cherry and Whites, with Evans slotting the conversion from the corner to take the score to 29 - 14.
Gloucester weren't finished there, and found time for more. Evans slotted yet another long range penalty to give further daylight, before Elliott Creed finished off another well worked play to seal the 5 point win, to the delight of Academy Manager Pete Buxton
"This is a focussed and talented group of young players, who have masses of potential" said Buxton. "All of the U18 league games will be hard fought contests and are a real challenge of our ability and character. I was pleased with large aspects of our performance today and the way in which we remained calm under pressure, but the lads will admit we still have more progress to make"
Gloucester Rugby VS Leeds Rugby
Saturday 14th December 2013
Kick Off: 13:30