Sunday, July 14, 2024

Rugby: T-Birds win the league!

Tuson time

Thurrock T-Birds 32 v 5 Richmond

THIS was a much tougher game than the score line suggests and it was only the willingness of the T-Birds to put their bodies on the line and make tackle after tackle that won them the game.

With the normal 9-10 partnership of Cook and Rettie missing and no natural kicking replacement available, the tactics were slightly different to normal. It amounted to just run everything.

A quick tap and go from a midfield penalty saw the ball end up in the hands of Sophie Tyler who used her pace and power to hit a gap and stroll under the posts in only 4 minutes.

Richmond then put in a huge shift camped on the Thurrock line for a good 10 minutes but the defence held firm. A turnover on the T’s tryline saw Tuson unfairly flagged in touch inside her own 10 m line, but Hepper collected the loose ball at the lineout and set off for the far tryline, brought down inches short, the offload fell into the hands of Nat Smith and Ts were 10 nil up.

By now, the wind was up, freezing rain was falling and the handling from both sides deteriorated.
Richmond had another good spell and a missed tackle in the slippery conditions let them get around the outside to score and make a game of it.

Unfortunately shortly after a serious injury to Richmond’s Captain, Wessell saw the game move to another pitch where the –Birds took full advantage of the disruption to bag 2 more scores from Tyler and Nichols and put some distance on the scoreboard.

The second half was well delayed by the arrival of the air ambulance.

Richmond came out fired up after the delay and really pressured Thurrock for the best part of 10 minutes but T’s just soaked it up and waited for their opportunities.

Two tries in a seven minute period from Sally Tuson made the game safe at 32 -5 and Ts started to bring on their finishers.

Megan Okey turned 18 on Saturday and made her T-Bird debut on Sunday.

Minutes after arriving on the pitch, she joined the end of the backline and with her first touch of the ball, went over in the corner to score.
Now with Ts in full flow, Smith got her second and Tuson claimed her hat trick.
Richmond kept fighting and closed the game out with a consolation score to end 49-10.

This confirms the T-Birds as winners of Championship One South for the 3rd time in the last 4 years.

Ts will now face Firwood Waterloo ( winners of Championship One North) in the North v South Cup on the 26th March. Venue to be confirmed, but it will be somewhere in the midlands.

We understand that the injured Richmond player, Eryca Wessel, will have an operation on her leg today, so all at Thurrock RFC wish her well.

Team :-Hepper, Duffy, Nichols (T), Franklin, Baker, Edwards, Lockwood, Dyche, Parsad, Harvey, Lawther, Longdon-Hughes, Tyler (2T), Smith(2T),Tuson (3T) Rep:-Picton.L, Picton.P, , Ferguson, Okey (T).

As always, Thurrock Ladies, the T-Birds, welcome new players of any standard to their 2 teams.

No matter how big or small, there is a place for you in a Rugby Team. Many are beginners, playing in their first Season, so don’t be put off if you are new to the game.

We can promise you great training and a great social life. Just turn up on a Wednesday evening at 7.30.


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