McSorleys Match Report - Raiders 13/Oct/2018
By Grant Beuzeval
Raiders thwarted in Scottish ambush at the The Rock by Josh Wrafter
In what was the first league game for the year the lads arrived at the field full of confidence after coming off back-to-back wins in the trials. With the warm up behind them the Raiders took to the field only to fall behind on the scoreboard quickly with Scottish running in two quick tries and setting the standard for the tempo of the game. Encouraging signs were to follow with the Raiders digging in and after a calamitous start to the match began to dig in and fall back into their structures. This effort was rewarded with a large amount of possession and territory and all of a sudden with the forwards laying a platform the boys were well and truly back into the match. Pressing their advantage the Raiders got within striking distance, and on the back of consecutive penalties marched up field and got within throwing distance of the sticks where Dart kicked probably the most unconvincing penalty goal of his career, non-the-less points were on the board and the lads began their comeback (Scottish 12 - Raiders 3). With the half time break quickly approaching the Raiders looked again to turn possession into points and after looking to go wide, Scottish pounced on a Raiders handling errors and ran in two quick tries against the run of play to go into the break 24-3.
Half time gave the opportunity for the Raiders Team to gather their thoughts and get their game faces back on. At this point Dart also suggested that we could win it through penalty goals, ambitious…maybe a little. In saying this the Raiders Team were focused and headed from the sheds full of confidence, with a clear game plan to execute and get back into the competition. The Raiders took to the field and dominated early parts of the game, particularly the scrum until about 15 minutes into the second half when a level of player migration occurred with 13 out of a possible 15 players on the pitch substituted for Scottish in what some could comment was a somewhat vagrant flaunt of the unlimited interchange rule (or genius depending on which Team you were supporting and who had more subs). In any case they ran on what could only be described as the biggest front row known to man (circa 600kg) and fresh legs started to take it’s toll, with the game starting to open up and Scottish ran in back-to-back tries.
Down though not out the Raiders continued to show plenty of ticker and time and time again clawed their way back into the contest, this time through some neat phase play and interchanging passes within the forwards as well as a raid through the centres, setting-up the opportunity for Staten to crash over in what he would later describe as a 45 meter effort, in essence it was more like 4.5 meters though it had been a long game and given this was our only try no one would labour the point. Dave Benskin, who had been reliable with the boot all day, stepped up to turn 5 into 7 points and upon hitting the ball with his foot it cannoned like a torpedo missile unfortunately no where near the posts. Onwards we marched and with the lads trailing significantly and only a coupe of minutes on the clock, Wrafter took an intercept with 30 meters to run and was caught ten short of the line by the Scottish defence, unable to turn pressure into points - a fact he would later pay for during court. Quickly after the game was finished off with another try to Scottish and the first game had come to an end 49-8. With the game finished the Team gathered for a quick review with the key takeaway being the importance to build cohesion throughout the positions, something we can only do through training. Let's all make the effort and get down there!
Excellent effort as well as all the lads stuck around for the Prem's, let's ensure we do the same for our Viking brothers next time too!
Editor - Josh earns a $100 voucher from the Eclipse group for his match report.