Bracknell U13s snatch a draw from the jaws of victory
By John Halley
Report by Ian Manners
After ball boy duty for the 1st XV on a balmy March Saturday afternoon a mixed team of Bracknell U13 Hurricanes and Stormers took the pitch at 1030am on a very chilly Sunday morning against a big Basingstoke team at Basingstoke’s Sports Centre ground.
Basingstoke kicked off and after catching the ball Bracknell retained possession for the next three minutes before Basingstoke turned the ball over at a ruck and put the Bracknell defence under pressure. Fortunately for Bracknell one of the Basingstoke forwards dropped a pass and Bracknell centre, Sam Pemberton was on it in a flash, picking up to score a great try from inside his own 22 metre line.
Two minutes later James Branch caught the ball direct from the kick off and passed to right wing Oliver Anderson who ran an outside arc to outpace the defence to score, 10-0 to Bracknell.
Basingstoke bounced back quickly and from a tap penalty 5 metres from Bracknell’s line they crashed over to score, 10-5 Bracknell. Shortly afterwards Basingstoke scored again, 10-10.
Basingstoke continued to press Bracknell’s line but after sustained pressure Sam Pemberton broke Basingstoke’s defence and ran in to score another breakaway try, 15-10 Bracknell.
Minutes later Basingstoke scored just before the half time whistle to equalise, 15-15.
Bracknell kicked off and fullback Harry Mills followed up and picked up a loose ball from a Basingstoke knock on and put Sam Pemberton away for his hat trick, 20-15 Bracknell.
Sam was at it again eight minutes later to break from his 22 metre line to outpace the covering tacklers to score his 4th, 25-15 to Bracknell. The Bracknell boys seemed to ease up after that, thinking they were home and dry but they allowed Basingstoke to score 5 minutes from the end.
Basingstoke kept attacking and despite good defending by Bracknell, Basingstoke’s outside centre crashed over the line to grab a draw right on the final whistle.
Although it was probably a fair result as both teams played some good rugby in attack and defence.
Sam Pemberton was awarded Man of the Match by the Basingstoke coaches and the Bracknell coaches awarded the Man of the Match to Basingstoke’s outside centre.
There were some good performances by all the Bracknell boys and the boys played as a team a good bounce back after the weeks before performance, we need to build on the positives and look at a 60-minute performance,