KCL arrived at Berrylands for this game with great morale and high confidence. This resulted in a sharp warm up and a solid start on the kick off, in which KCL were immediately up in Hartpury’s faces. Doubt the opposition saw that coming. While Hartpury proved to have a strong attack, KCL clearly showed that they had just as strong of an attack and an even stronger defence, keeping the match played in the opposition’s half during the opening minutes of the match. No doubt that this was a solid start for KCL. Despite the effectiveness of KCL’s defence, Hartpury began playing out wide, leading to their first try against KCL. This was followed by another try for the opposition shortly afterwards, in which they scored from a pick and go just off the try line, though KCL had shown that they were a force to be reckoned with when it came to defending off the rucks. The ABC defence play had clearly sunk in. Despite the opposition’s lead, KCL remained strong, maintaining the same level of intensity that they had walked onto the pitch with and keeping their heads high. This was evident in the play that followed, in which a number of line breaks were made as a result of the interplay between the forwards and backs, leading to a significant amount of ground being made and KCL getting back in the opposition’s half. However, a few missed tackles and KCL being too drawn in led to Hartpury scoring several more tries, giving them a good lead at half time.
Despite the score, KCL went into the second half with even more intensity and determination than they had in the first half. Due to several injuries, both teams were forced down to 13 men, leaving the scrums uncontested. This provided KCL with an advantage against Hartpury, who had proved to have a very strong pack. KCL’s determination was evident in the way that they continued to punch holes in the opposition’s defence, as well as their increased discipline in their own defence. This kept the match firmly in the opposition’s half, bringing KCL closer and closer to scoring. Though KCL showed great spirit, Hartpury continued to play the ball out wide and make ground, leading to several more tries against KCL. This resulted in the overall score being 50-0 to Hartpury, though it is not to say that KCL made it easy for them.
The score may have been disappointing, but there were a lot of positives that could be taken from the match. Every player put in a strong performance, and the team as a whole never lost their determination, keeping their heads high and maintaining a strong attitude. A huge thank you to all those who were involved, as well as those who were injured and came down to show their support. Let us all recover and ensure that KCL continues to play with the same attitude that they had during this match, as well as achieve a better score.