Match Thoughts – Vs Hartbury College
Well… another tough Saturday and another tough result! We all expected this season to be tough both physically and mentally, but Saturday’s result highlighted the fact that both of these aspects need to addressed and met head on! Our performances need to improve if we are too gain respect for ourselves, from the coaches, management, sponsors and more importantly from the fans that come and watch week in and week out! The immediate moment after the final whistle had gone and we were in the traditional team huddle together, the looks said a million words! We all looked at each other and everyone of us knew that performance was unacceptable. Words were then spoken, but ones that cannot be repeated due to the amount of unsavoury words!
This is a match that many will want to forget, but I believe it’s that feeling of pain and embarrassment we all had as a team in that huddle which we should remember! That pain and disappointment should drive us to never feel like that again, to work harder in the gym, in training, and work harder mentally to focus on the game and what matters! We must all honour those that have put the lions shirt on before us as well as those that wear the shirt each Saturday. It’s those people that have put us in this fortunate position of playing rugby all across the south, against massive clubs and on fantastic pitches (possibly not Dings Crusaders though!). We must be willing to fight for every inch and for every second of the 80 minutes. As for the game details, I’ll leave that to Helen Ryan & Dougie Warren to write up, besides the only detail I want to remember is that pain and how I don’t want to feel like that again!
This week we focus on Dings and a trip down to Bristol! Speaking to friends and fellow players, we know this game is going to be tough, physical and a game where we will be right in the face of adversity against a tough aggressive pack with an even tougher more aggressive support. Training therefore this week has focused on winning the collision at the tackle/breakdown area and getting behind the defence by hook or by crook. Moving the feet, spinning, or dragging to get behind is 100% essential and we must do whatever we can to get that. Once that has happened we must smash & clear that area and take as many opposing players with us out of the way and moving backwards. Any opposing player on our player & ball must be removed with as much force as possible and we must be absolutely ruthless about that!
Forwards it’s time to step up and man up as we must get the ball moving forward so the backs can have quick, clean ball to work with. We must drive our legs into the ground, stick our heads in places where we’re going to get hurt. If we can do that, then we can win, and get some pride back into this lion pack. This game is perfect to avenge that pain from last week, and a real tester of our attitudes and passion for rugby and Bournemouth RFC!