Tag: International Gay Rugby

Spartans 2XV-A’s v Newcastle Ravens 1XV

The Spartans welcomed Newcastle Ravens 1XV to Manchester in a game that brought a tight contest last season.

Both teams started at a frantic space with plenty of tackles and contests at the breakdown and limited space to find the tryline. The Spartans contested well at the breakdown with Matt Proctor an early standout performer as the openside flanker.

The Ravens began to edge their way towards the try line after the first quarter. They won a penalty on the Spartans 5m line and were able to crash over on the second phase to make it 5-0.

After their breakthrough, the Ravens took control of a slippery ball between plays. The forwards recovered the ball at the breakdown and swung it wide to their lock, who broke a tackle and fed the winger who was able to add a second score.

The Spartans were not to be deterred and showed great resilience, particularly at the breakdown. with Christian Davis orchestrating attacks from scrum half, the Spartans were pushing well through the forwards and making quick footwork through the backs. However they were unable to reap the rewards of their pressure.

At the half hour mark, as the Spartans were making grounds towards the Ravens tryline, a Spartans pass was expertly picked off by the Ravens centre who sprinted clear to touch down. The kicker added the conversion to given the Ravens some breathing space at 17-0.

Although the the Ravens continued to push for further tries, the Spartans held their defensive discipline and a wonderful tackle from Rob Bartlett sent the winger into touch and stopped a counter attack.

However, 7 minutes the Ravens centre again picked off an attacking pass from the Spartans and raced clear to bring the score to 22-0.

A Spartans score was needed at this point and they found it through fly half Matt Brown just before half time and the Spartans went into the break on a high.

They kept the momentum going in the second half with another score. A long clearing kick from the Spartans bounced favourably for Sam Bailey who offloaded wonderfully in the tackle to Ian Stodart. Stodart was able to beat his defender and touch down to bring the score to 12-22.

After this, the game was very much played in the middle of the park with the referee blowing for infringements at the breakdown and both sides paying the price for some inconsistent temperament.

The Ravens conserved their lead at the hour mark when they turned the ball over at the breakdown. From there, they were patient enough to see out multiple Spartans tackles and multiple phases before touching down. The score coming to 27-12.

The Spartans flexed their attacking muscle, with replacement number 9 Rory Leventhorpe anchoring the attack and a wonderful partnership from thrower Marc Jones to caller Anthony McCaul at the line-out proved threatening but sadly they were unable to add to their 12 points and the Ravens claimed the spoils.

Back of the match was Ian Stodart
Forward of the match was Matt Proctor

Spartans 2XV-Bs v York RI Templars

Manchester Village Spartans 2B’s welcomed a York Templars to Sale for their latest IGR adventure.

From the kick off the Templars experience was telling as they searched for a breakthrough, and had the Spartans defending early on with great bravery.

The breakthrough came from a set piece that was quickly released to the Templars left winger who broke two tackles and touched down infield, although the conversion was missed.

The Spartans had more defending to do as Templars pressed for a second, and did so admirably with big hits being laid out on the Templars forwards. Multiple phases of play brought Templars to the 5 metre line. From the resulting phase the scrum half broke through to the try line, only for winger Ian Stodart to hold it up superbly, and the Spartans were able to clear.

The Templars movement from the set piece was impressive and from a line out inside the Spartans half, they spread the play quickly and the number 8 broke through the line and touched down under the posts with the conversion successful.

The Templars continued to press but the Spartans – though inexperienced – were not without enthusiasm, and it showed by a wonderful tackle by Rob Barlett on the Scholars 8 that brought an attack to a halt. Minutes later the pressure told though as the Templars scored again to bring the score to 24-0.

The Spartans confidence in their attacks was beginning to grow, with the forwards causing problems for the Templars defensive line. Although they were able to clear with a big kick into space, the Spartans back 3 recovered the ball well, and won a penalty to clear their lines.

After another Templars unconverted try, the Spartans attacking pressure began to grow as breaks from scrum half James Anderson and fly half Chris Goodman took them to the Templars 5 metre line. From the breakdown, Anderson whipped down the blindside and scrambled over to get the Spartans off the mark at 5-29.

The Templars pressed back however, and their wide gameplay brought another try from the left winger.

Back came the Spartans, attacking not only with bravery, but with confidence that forced the Templars into being offside. From the scrum inside the 22, Anderson again peeled away and his momentum carried him over the line to bring the score to 36-10.

However the Templars then took control of the game, their experience and fitness beginning to tell as a flurry of tries in the third quarter took them further ahead.

The Spartans never wavered, even after the tries being scored. Some terrific carries from Chris Hobert and Nathan Colom caused the Templars headaches as they struggled to contain them. Debutant Gus Ihm’s outstanding carry from his own half brought huge cheers from the sidelines – and from himself!

Although the Templars scored another try to take them to 78-10 the Spartans fed off the positive energy and some beautiful teamwork between forwards and backs, as well as some ambitious kicking, saw a scrum at the Templars 5 metre line. Anderson again sped down the blindside and scored for his hat trick.

The Templars pressed back, but the Spartans continued to grow into this game, and huge hits aplenty from forwards and backs limited their experienced opponents to just two further tries. The referee blew the whistle with the final score 15-88 to the Templars.

The scoreline reflected little of the Spartans gameplay, bravery and clear improvement since being formed in the summer. The Spartans man of the match award went to Nathan Gostick with special mention to Gus Ihm for an outstanding first game for the Spartans!

#gayrugby #inclusiverugby #igrukleagues

For the latest results and tables click here.