Easter weekend busy but successful for Gloucester U17 team
26 April 2014 09:00
By Duncan Wood
The Gloucester Rugby U17 squad faced a tough schedule over the Easter weekend, but passed the test with flying colours with victories over London Wasps and Bristol.
The two away fixtures were arranged with the aim of giving every player involved in the squad the opportunity to represent the club and advance their development in preparation for next year's U18 League.
First up was a great occasion organised by London Wasps, as the respective U17s squad met at Twickenham in what could be regarded as The Stinger part 2 straight after the first teams finished their encounter.
The team played with real ambition with the ball scoring five tries in total from Matt Protherowe, Robbie Faulkner, Toby Bridgeman, Joe Gare and captain Harry Wilson.
Organised defence held Wasps to one score whilst Gloucester were down to 14 men before half time.
With both teams making a lot of changes in the second half, play became more disjointed but Gloucester ran out comfortable 32-7 winners.
Bank Holiday Monday brought about a fixture against Bristol at Gordano RFC. A lot of changes were made to the side to allow all of the players some competitive game time.
It again what proved to be an explosive game of rugby with both teams committed to playing expansive rugby.
But Gloucester again came out on top scoring five tries to two, with one each for Harry Lloyd-Jones, Jake O'Neil, Elliot Creed, Gareth Jones and Joe Mullis.
Final Score 31-15.
The U17s now have one final game against Exeter at Hartpury next Saturday before the first team take on London Irish at Kingsholm later that day.
Speaking after the 37-8 European Rugby Challenge Cup win over Benetton Treviso, James Hook admitted that the Italian side made things tough for Gloucester at times but that the Cherry and Whites are happy to take the bonus point win and turn their focus to Northampton next week.
Speaking to GRTV after the game, Backs Coach Tim Taylor was happy with the squad as they cruised to victory over Treviso. The result wasn't in doubt, but the Cherry and Whites laboured to secure a crucial try bonus point.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester Rugby centre Matt Scott is excited to take the field again as the Cherry and Whites look to build on the win in Bayonne when Treviso come to Kingsholm this Saturday.
Defence Coach Jonny Bell admitted this week that the European Rugby Challenge Cup victory in Bayonne was a welcome one, stressed that Benetton Treviso will pose a tough test on Saturday at Kingsholm but that Gloucester are determined to deliver in front of their own fans.
Motu Matu'u is looking to make up for lost time this week as the Cherry and Whites head to Basque Country to take on Bayonne in the European Rugby Challenge Cup opener. The Samoan hooker made his first appearance in the jersey last weekend, and is hoping to contribute to the team this weekend.
Gloucester's attentions turn to Europe this weekend as they travel to Bayonne for their opening fixture of this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup. Forwards Coach Trevor Woodman told GRTV that the Cherry and Whites will be aiming to top their pool as they've done for the past two seasons, but is well aware of how tough it is to win in France.
Although understandably disappointed at seeing victory slip away at the last minute, Ben Morgan said after the game at Exeter that there were plenty of positives that Gloucester could take from the game.
Gloucester made it two wins from two outings in this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup as they outplayed Benetton Treviso at Kingsholm to win by 37 points to 8, the bonus point try coming with the final play of the game.