Evesham ring the changes as they cruise to victory
By Andrew Flaxman
Game Tewkesbury unable to stem the tide by the Avon
The buzzard gliding on sunlit thermals as this match drew to a close was perhaps emblematic as the Under-13s soared to victory without ever hitting the heights.
As the coaches rang the changes, benching some star names and playing others in unfamiliar positions to broaden their experience, some elements of disjointed play were inevitable, but still the boys hit enough purple passages of easy-on-the-eye rugby to wrap this game up with plenty of time to spare.
Tewkesbury were game throughout, but lacked the defensive steel to cope with Evesham's running and the passing play that was still excellent when it fired fully. Indeed the visitors were a constant threat trhoughout the first half and only ran out of steam in the later stages, when Evesham, too, had lost their edge and the match became very sloppy.
First blood went to Evesham after a clever chip from Luke R allowed the centre eventually to pounce on the ensuing loose ball, but the visitors from down the Avon pulled level with a superb solo run from deep. This time there was no Darcey to track the runner as the tough tackling winger played a key role in keeping out the boys in yellow and black.
Luke D was denied in the act of touching down from a lovely break, and Theo too came close, before the Asum lead was doubled by a monstrous Josh A drive, handing off and pushing through what seemed like the entire Tewkesbury side before touching down.
A good break from Oli A, playing fly-half today, set up Theo for Evesham's third and the scores began to mount up as Angelo pounced on a loose ball and Django finished off a move after the dominant Evesham scrum won another one against the head. Yet they could easily have conceded more themselves, with another tackle from Darcey saving a try and Tewkesbury taking the ball over the whitewash in a maul before being held up.
With the scoreboard reading 5-1 to the home side at the break the floodgates began to open in the second half with Theo, Django, Alex and Kal all finding the ever-widening gaps in the visitors' defence to break through. Possibly the most pleasing were Luke D's two scores, which allowed the man of the match to break his try duck for the season.
The chance to play in different roles will be a good learning opportunity for the boys, even though their standards slipped towards the end with both their rucking and support play found wanting, perhaps understandably given the lack of pressure.
Team: Harry W; Kal; Oli P; Oli A; Alex; Jonty; Theo; Josh N; Josh A; Darcey; Luke D; Luke R; Django; Angelo; Tom; Ewan
Tries Theo (2); Django (2); Luke D (2); Alex; Kal; Angelo; Luke R; Josh A