There was an air of excitement at Medway RFC on Sunday 2 May before the final of the U18 Girls Kent Cup. The team warmed up with coaches Vicky, Paul, Tom and Gary while keeping an eye on the U15’s Cup final (Tunbridge Wells edged it in a very close match against the combined Old Colfeians/Dartford Valley team).
The U18s match finally kicked off and the Crimsons (Sevenoaks/Old Colfeians/Dartfordians) were immediately under pressure from the very strong, well-drilled and experienced Medway side. The first five minutes were spent in our own half and although our scrum was solid, the lineout wasn’t quite functioning, and Medway were able to punch through the Crimsons’ defence to score their first try in the left-hand corner. The difficult touch-line conversion was missed.
Medway again won the ball from our lineout and the referee indicated that she was going to be very strict about high tackles as she reached for her pocket to issue the first of what would be three yellow cards in the match. From the penalty, Medway kicked to the right corner, won their lineout and scored under the posts. The successful conversion made the score 12-0.
Most of the rest of the half was spent in frantic defence pinned back in our own half with hard work for the forwards as scrum followed scrum. Although the Crimsons’ scrummaging was solid, eventually Medway were able to drop on a loose ball over the line for their third score, which was duly converted to make the score 19-0. In the last minutes of the first half, the Crimsons attacked and made good ground deep into Medway’s 22, but were just unable to finish off the pressure with a score.
In the second half, the strength and handling skills of the Medway backs really showed. There were three scores in quick succession which were built by accurate passing across the pitch at speed and scores in the corner, despite heroic efforts in defence from our team. A final try towards the end made the final score 39-0.
A tough day at the office for the Crimson’s girls, but they displayed determination and resilience in the face of a very strong Medway side, who emerged as well-deserved Kent champions. There were tears on the pitch in the final huddle with many thank yous and best wishes for the Old Colfeians girls for whom this was their last match with the U18s.