How’s everyone feeling now? I hope you are all enjoying the feeling that a good victory brings. I am certainly much more upbeat this time despite various parts of my body calling out in pain!!
Thanks to your efforts this afternoon, All France managed their first victory of the season. And a very well deserved good victory it was. I think the final score was 50-21.
We started the first half well and scored twice before the Gentle Giants got more into the game. Maybe after our second score we lost concentration as we seemed to cool off a little, making mistakes and letting the opposition through. We responded well and scored again but again we let the Giants back into the game. After they scored we again responded and worked our way to another try.
After our half time talk where I emphasized the necessity of working on tackling better and supporting players more, we went out onto the pitch with the intention of playing it as a new game. And we did. We controlled most of the second half scoring four more tries before letting in the Giants for a final try on the final play of the game (and that was a long final play!)
So we won comfortably. There was good support, good communication and some great breaks by many players, especially Keith whose speed at times seemed to make the Giants just give up. Our scrum was reasonably solid, and our line-out was not perfect but had some good moments and even a couple of turnovers. The backs worked hard and were strong with their running and strength in tackling.
But we have room for improvement. Tackling has to be tighter still. Remember legs, legs, legs – we were penalized for high tackles too much and we will be punished as Keith was today. As I stressed today, tackling around the chest just allows the opposition to keep moving with the ball – when they are on the floor they must release the ball and so we have a better chance of stealing. Not releasing the player after a tackle – I personally felt the ref was targeting us a little harder then the Giants for this but in any case it is something that we must remember. And of course, retreating 10 at a penalty – we must get back quicker. This happens so much to us in games, so let’s try and fix it.
In the end, it was a good solid win and a win that we have been waiting for all season. Thank you to all of you who came to play today especially the 2 who played for the Giants, Tanaka-san and one more whose name I can’t remember now but is a friend of Onda-san.
We have 2 games in March, on Sunday March 3rd and Sunday March 17th. I hope as many of you as possible will be there (but I have to miss 3rd for work!).
Great game guys! A reminder of who took part today:
Charlie, Kousuke, Hirano-san, Quentin, Mike, Fredrik, Phillipe, Erwan, Kitaguchi-san Yama, Onda-san, Taka, Kazu, Hisa, Hamza, Romain R, Dan, Keith, Tanaka-san & Onda-san’s friend came to play with us but ended up playing for the Giants. (If I have missed anyone, please tell me!)
Scorers (not in order): Keith x 3 Kitauchi-san x 2 Taka Dan Charlie Yama x 5 conversions
Thanks guys! Keep training, keep fit and I’ll see you on the pitch again soon!!
PS As always, pass this message on to those not on the mailing list please! JP – Kousuke has the bag with unused shirts and medical kit. I have the used shirts which I will wash and either pass to Dan or se