Match result: 47-7 (loss)
Man of the match: Oliver Millard
Dean Close have played six and won six games so far this season, so it was always going to be a very tough encounter and big ask to win this game.
Within the first 15 minutes, Dean Close had scored two tries, and it didn’t look good for us. But as usual, we dug deep and made some fantastic tackles and cover tackles to stop a very big and skilful Dean Close team scoring again in the first half. When we did have the chance to attack, and we looked like we could break down the Dean Close defensive line, we then lost the ball or forced a pass against a strong defence, which stopped our momentum.
The second half started like the first half had finished, with Malvern making errors and losing possession, Dean close, however, are very clinical in the way they play and punished us with some well-taken tries. From a scrum 20 metres out from the Dean Close try line, Dylan Sillence attacked and passed to Ludo Staley who bust the Dean close defensive line only, to be hauled down a metre short of the try line, but had the skill and awareness to pop a pass to Henry Forbes to score next to the posts. Unfortunately, we made too many errors to threaten Dean Close again.
We show so much spirit and character when we play, unfortunately, our opponents were better than us today.
Match result: 36-0 (loss)
On Saturday the 2nd XV faced near neighbours Dean Close. The first half was very much a war of attrition with Malvern having the most possession, but Dean Close the territory. Despite several attempts, Malvern couldn’t manage to breach the Dean Close try line and towards the end of the half, Dean Close, against the run of play, managed to score a converted try and went into the break 7-0 up.
In the second half, Dean Close was very much in the ascendancy and try as they might, Malvern couldn’t gain good possession in the Dean Close half, but Dean Close managed to cross our try line five times resulting in a final score of 36-0 to Dean Close.
Though the scoreline didn’t reflect how hard the Malvern team played, the boys should take heart and if they can perform as they did in the first half in the next games, they will win their matches.
Match result: 17-17
Try scorers: Paddy Moyle, Lewis McMurdo and Tom Cox
Man of the match: Louis Staley
From the opening exchanges, it was obvious that this was going to be a close encounter, with both teams fairly well-matched across the park. Malvern were the first on the scoreboard, courtesy of an opportunist interception from Paddy Moyle, who showed good pace to finish the chance from the halfway line. Dean Close responded quickly with some effective work around the breakdown and a strong catch-and-drive at the lineout to level the scores. Malvern looked particularly dangerous when the ball was moved out wide, and an excellent first phase move saw Lewis McMurdo cross for a try. The score was poised nicely at 12-10 to Dean Close as the sides went into half-time, with Malvern yet to find an answer to Dean Close’s driving maul, but Dean Close yet to find an answer to Malvern’s fast and evasive backline.
Sure enough, Dean Close used this dominance in the maul to score another try at the beginning of the second half and take a 17-10 lead going into the closing stages. The highlight of the match was undoubtedly the try from Tom Cox, which took the score to 17-15. With Malvern applying pressure in the opposition 22, Tom identified the space out wide and communicated the cross-kick option to Paddy at fly-half, who executed the kick superbly. Charlie Williams showed great composure to convert the difficult kick, and level the match.
This was a fantastic exhibition of schoolboy rugby, and Malvern will take a number of things into training next week.
Match result: 32-5 (win)
Try scorers: Woody Shaw, Antoine Sclater, Seb Roberts, Jay Yang, Adam Narbeth, Jonty Horton
The first ten minutes of this match suggested that this would be a very tight and hard-fought encounter with little to choose between either team.
Excellent tackling in opening exchanges set up a strong platform and Jay Yang’s opening try in the corner was a result of turning over Dean Close ball at the breakdown. This was followed by a superb team effort, scored by Nikolay Chagai under the posts after a sequence of excellent support play and good passing. Jonty Horton then added a wonderful try, making the most of good quality ball won by the forwards. His footwork for the finish was outstanding and it was great to have him back in the side after a lengthy absence following injury.
With a 19 point advantage at halftime, Malvern enjoyed a healthy lead but showed no signs of dropping intensity in the second half. Early scores from Will Brinkman, deputising at Scrum Half and also Alexey Poulet after a great kick chase from Antoine Sclater, put the game out of reach for the opposition but, to their credit, Dean Close did not capitulate and scored an excellent try of their own in the corner. The remaining tries were scored by Jonty Horton, Antoine Sclater, and James Myres following an excellent break from Adam Narbeth on the halfway line.
James Myres also scored five of the conversions and was instrumental to the team thanks to his decision making at Fly Half and his leadership throughout the game.
In short, this was the most impressive performance of the season and one of which the squad can be extremely proud!
Match result: 22-12 (loss)
Try scorer: Finley Morris
Man of the match: Will Crossland
Malvern travelled away to Dean Close in their first match back from the half term break in what were utterly miserable conditions. They went into the game full of confidence after the Solihull victory and a good week of training and started strongly, playing some good phases and working their way up the field. Eventually, Joe Randall made an excellent break and evaded defenders to all but finish the try himself but Finley Morris took that glory, picking and going a few phases later. However, Malvern found it difficult to adjust to the extra space found on the 1st XV pitch while Dean Close used it wisely through some excellent tactical kicking, causing Malvern to concede three tries before half time but all of them in the corner, restricting conversion opportunities. 17-5 down at half time, Malvern were still buoyant and had the run downhill in the second period. They proceeded to spend all but a few minutes in Dean Close’s half but just didn’t make the most of the chances they worked so hard to create. Finley did grab another well-worked try which Joe duly converted but also conceded a breakaway try against the run of play – leaving the second half scoreline at 7-5 Malvern. This did not satisfy the U15 side though as they knew on the day that they were the better rugby side but did not come away with the victory. The progress being shown in the group is excellent and time will turn this progress into success.
On the day Will Crossland was the man of the match for an outstanding defensive display but special mention also goes to Angus Catto for his work ethic, communication and some moments of top quality.
Match result: 36-10 (win)
Try scorers: Luca Jansen Van Vuuren x3 and Cameron Smith X3
Malvern had to adapt to extremely wet and trying conditions and to playing away for the first time and showed great determination throughout.
With some fifty/fifty decisions going against us, we had to take control of the set pieces and remain calm and after a slow start, Malvern started to control the game. Cameron Smith broke the opposition’s defence to score Malvern’s first try. The try was converted by Frankie Jefferies. Luca Jansen van Vuuren, who had a strong game at no.8 with some strong carries, scored two more tries to give Malvern a well-deserved lead of 17-5 at halftime.
After dominating the set pieces and adapting better to the conditions, Luca Jansen Van Vuuren scored one more try after halftime and Cameron added two more tries to his tally after some good breaks. Good tactical awareness by Ollie Minter and Frankie Jefferies allowed Malvern to stay on the front foot in the wet conditions. Frankie added two more conversions to take the final score to 36-10 to Malvern.
Well done to Malvern for keeping their composure when cool heads were required.
Match result: 22-17 (win)
The U14B team won their fixture of the season v Dean Close School, 22-17.
After a monstrous downpour that restricted our preparation time, the boys were itching to play. We started the first half brightly, using our possession from set pieces to allow our strong runners, Reuben Dargen and Tekkan Iinuma to express themselves. The first try was scored by Tekkan Iinuma, finishing off some good handling from the backs to score in the corner. In our next visit to their 22, Alek Van Dam ran the ball in under the posts from another set-piece move which Joel Cox converted. Alek’s contribution was notable throughout the game with his lightning quick responses and non-stop tackling which saved more than one try being conceded. Joel Cox controlled the game very well using his kicking game to good effect.
Thankfully, our cushion of points was further expanded when Hector Mellor received a lovely pass from Iinuma and did well to break a few tackles to score on his debut. It was not too long again before Reuben Dargen’s physical presence in the backline allowed Malvern to score yet again to close out the first half in a one-sided affair.
Bizarrely, the second half was a completely different proposition and the home side suddenly woke up and were determined to bring their big forwards into the game. Our pack seemed a little dazed as we started to lose momentum, losing the foot race to get numbers over the ball at the breakdown.
As the game went on, we began falling off tackles as their strong forward runners were able to crash through and we leaked three tries in succession one of which they converted. Thankfully, after a late surge towards the end, we managed to hang on to win a close match, Malvern’s resilience seeing us to the finish line.
The boys were pleased to win away from home with a much-changed team and are keen to fine-tune their handling skills and rucking next week.