Wins for Lions, U20s and Nigeria
23 June 2013
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It was a satisfying weekend not only because all the teams I was rooting for won their games, but also because Eastern Counties players played their part in each one.
The Youngs brothers from Holt RFC performed brilliantly in the Lions narrow victory in Australia, but the team had more that its fair share of luck. A number of missed kicks by O’Connor then Beales slipping as he kicked what could have been the winning goal gave the Lions the victory but it was by no means a comfortable one.
Colchester RFC’s Alex Day started at scrum half for England U20s in the Junior World Cup final in France against Wales, and what game it was. 15-3 down at half time with a try disallowed for foul play which was hard to spot even in slow motion, followed by a yellow card at the start of the second half looked like victory was a lost cause. But despite a second (more obvious) disallowed try the young England players gradually dominated and scored 20 unanswered points to bring the trophy home to Twickenham A mention also to Will Hooley (Cambridge RFC) who was in the tournament squad but didn’t play in the final.
Finally Nigeria won their first game in many years with a huge 63-3 win over Mauritius in Division 1c of the Africa Cup being played in Ivory Coast. The win is more remarkable as the teams had met the previous two seasons with Mauritius winning both times. Nigeria Rugby has been recruiting in the UK and worldwide and at last it has taken its first steps up the IRB rankings with a place in the 2019 Rugby World Cup the ultimate goal. The side included back Tiwa Obesisan who lives in Colchester and played a couple of times for their Colts before playing for Canterbury where he is at university. The Nigerian coach is Bury St Edmunds’ Gavin Hogg. Nigeria’s next game is on Wednesday against Morocco, 57 places above them in the rankings.