The Aviva A League returned last night after a week’s break, and now heads into a two month long break following an exciting evening of rugby.
With there being such a wait until the next round of games, many coaches opted to give their young players even more time than usual, in the knowledge that this is the last time for a while, though some went experienced in search of results.
The Northern Conference saw some real drama, staring with Northampton Wanderers v Wasps. Northampton won it 45-10, suggesting something of a rout, however the reality was far from that.
Just after the break Wasps scored to make it 24-10 in the home side’s favour, and it stayed that way until the final ten minutes when Northampton suddenly blew their opponents off the park. Former England U20 winger Howard Packman scored a stunning four tries, with Charlie Clare and James Wilson also on the scoreboard as Northampton secured a 45-10 win.
Over in Sale there was a commanding victory for Leicester Tigers A over Sale Jets as they stormed to a 34-0 victory. They were 24 points to the good at the break following two penalty tries and a try from U20 World Championship winner, George Catchpole. In the second half Sam Yawayawa, the former England U18 wing, added a brace to give the Tigers side a 34-0 win.
The final game in the North saw Newcastle Falcons A travel to Worcester Cavaliers. Falcons secured a 39-18 victory, and went in at the break 12 points ahead following tries from Olympian Marcus Watson, Joshua Chisanga, and Fred Burdon, with Worcester responding with a try from Andy Short.
In the second half Burdon scored a second, with Sam Lockwood also scoring for Newcastle, and Dan Marshall touching down late on. In response Alex Hearle of Shrewsbury 6th form College and former Millfield hooker Freddie Davison both scored for the Cavaliers, but ultimately in vain, with Newcastle taking a 39-18 win.
The action in the south actually started on Sunday, with Gloucester United ending Bristol United’s unbeaten start to the A League with a stunning 31-29 victory at Taunton RFC.
Bristol led 19-7 at half time, but Gloucester came flying back out in the second half, with Dan Thomas in the back row and England U20 star Mat Protheroe at fly half particularly impressive.
That left just two games for Monday night, starting with Bath United v Saracens Storm, which turned out to be another thriller. Saracens led 17-13 at the break only for Bath to come charging back at them. It then took two late tries from Saracens’ Jared Saunders to steal victory from the jaws of defeat for Saracens. It was a good evening for hookers at Saracens, with the man Saunders replaced, Scott Spurling, also score a brace, meanwhile former Stowe wing Rotimi Segun also scored for the victors as they sealed a thrilling 29-23 victory.
The final game in the South was another very high scoring affair, this time at the Twickenham Stoop as Exeter Braves beat hosts Harlequins 39-22.
Exeter were in fine form, and scored tries through Elvis Taione, Moray Low, Shaun Malton, and a brace from Ben White on their way to victory. For followers of June’s U20 World Championships, there was also a brace for Harlequins winger Robbie Nairn, who represented Scotland at those championships. He came off the bench to narrow the deficit, but unfortunately it was not enough for his side as they slipped to a 39-22 defeat.
Aviva A League Results:
Northampton Wanderers 45-10 Wasps (19.30)
Sale Jets 0-34 Leicester Tigers (19.30)
Worcester Cavaliers 18-39 Newcastle Falcons A (19.30)
Bath United 23-29 Saracens Storm (19.30)
Bristol United 29-31 Gloucester United (Sunday)
Harlequins A 22-39 Exeter Braves (19.30)
Northampton Wanderers v Wasps A
15 Ahsee Tuala, 14 Howard Packman, 13 Nafi Tuitavake, 12 James Wilson, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Sam Olver, 9 Alex Mitchell, 1 Campese Ma’afu, 2 Charlie Clare, 3 Gareth Denman, 4 Api Ratuniyarawa, 5 Jordan Onojaife, 6 Sion Bennett, 7 Lewis Ludlam, 8 Sam Dickinson.
Replacements: 16 Reece Marshall, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Adam Parkins / Matt Beesley, 19 Alex Moon, 20 Devante Onojaife, 21 Tom Emery, 22 Juan Pablo Estelles, 23 George Furbank.
15 Owain James, 14 Tom Howe, 13 Nick De Luca, 12 Brendan Macken, 11 Guy Armitage, 10 Connor Eastgate, 9 Craig Hampson, 1 Tom Bristow, 2 Tom Cruse, 3 Phil Swainston, 4 Will Rowlands, 5 Marcus Garrett, 6 Ali Bone, 7 Jack Willis, 8 Alex Rieder.
Replacements: 16 George Edgson, 17 Jarod Leat, 18 Will Stuart, 19 Ehize Ehizode, 20 Tom Willis, 21 Alex Smit, 22 Alapati Leiua, 23 Jacob Umaga.
Sale Jets v Leicester Tigers A
15 Charlie Ingall, 14 Nick Scott, 13 Conor Wilkinson, 12 Sam Bedlow, 11 Jordan Dorrington, 10 Tom Morton, 9 Conor Dever, 1 James Flynn, 2 Curtis Langdon, 3 Diogo Ferriera, 4 Lou Reed, 5 George Nott, 6 Matt Roberson, 7 Andy Hughes (c), 8 Laurence Pearce.
Replacements: 16 Johnny Matthews, 17 Jake Pope, 18 Derek Salisbury, 19 Matt Postlethwaite, 20 Tom Curry, 21 Ben Curry, 22 George Peel, 23 James Bailey.
15 Harry Simmons, 14 Sam Yawayawa, 13 Jack Roberts, 12 Oli Bryant, 11 George Catchpole, 10 George Worth, 9 Sam Harrison, 1 Michele Rizzo, 2 Harry Thacker (c), 3 Fraser Balmain, 4 Harry Wells, 5 Joe Maksymiw, 6 Will Owen, 7 Will Evans, 8 Luke Hamilton.
Replacements: 16 Harry Mahoney, 17 Riccardo Brugnara, 18 Pat Cilliers, 19 Sam Lewis, 20 Fred Tuilagi, 21 Ben White, 22 Charlie Thacker, 23 Jordan Olowofela.
Worcester Cavaliers v Newcastle Falcons A
15 Jon Hughes, 14 Alex Hearle, 13 Max Stelling, 12 Will Butler, 11 Andy Short, 10 Tiff Eden, 9 Alex Glashan, 1 Ryan Bower (c), 2 Freddie Davison, 3 Mike Daniels, 4 Andrew Kitchener, 5 Charlie Hewitt, 6 Ben Fowles, 7 Sam Betty, 8 Ted Hill.
Replacements: 16 Callum Lynch, 17 Derrick Appiah, 18 Biyi Alo, 19 TBC, 20 Tom Dodd, 21 Josh Nott, 22 Robbie Keith, 23 Max Craven.
15 Tom Ffitch, 14 Marcus Watson, 13 Fred Burdon (c), 12 Craig Willis, 11 Zach Kibirige, 10 Brett Connon, 9 Sam Egerton, 1 Sam Lockwood, 2 David Nelson, 3 Paddy Ryan, 4 Archie Erskine, 5 Nick Civetta, 6 Harrison Orr, 7 Tyrone Holmes, 8 Joshua Chisanga.
Replacements:16 Santiago Socino, 17 Jack Elkington, 18 Andrew Foster, 19 Jamie Blamire, 20 Jack Johnson, 21 Ruaridh Dawson, 22 Charlie Wilson, 23 Dan Marshall.
Bath United v Saracens Storm
15 Will Partington, 14 Levi Davis, 13 Jeff Williams, 12 Rory Jennings (c), 11 Darren Atkins, 10 Adam Hastings, 9 Will Homer, 1 Beno Obano, 2 Michael van Vuuren, 3 Max Lahiff, 4 Alex Humfrey, 5 Will Britton, 6 Jake Polledri, 7 Levi Douglas, 8 Josh Bayliss.
Replacements:16 Gabriel Oghre, 17 Greg Palmer, 18 Shaun Knight, 19 Mike Snook, 20 Alex Weighton, 21 Cameron Brown, 22 Ludi Hopkinson.
15 Andrew Fenby, 14 George Perkins, 13 Oli Morris, 12 Tom Griffiths, 11 Rotimi Segun, 10 Tom Whiteley, 9 Henry Taylor, 1 Richard Barrington, 2 Scott Spurling, 3 Titi Lamositele, 4 Mark Flanagan, 5 Nick Isiekwe, 6 Jack Nay, 7 Kelly Brown (c), 8 Ben Earl.
Replacements: 16 Jared Saunders, 17 Ralp Adams-Hale, 18 Billy Walker, 19 Byron Hodge, 20 Anthony Maka, 21 Neil De Kock, 22 Rueben Bird-Tulloch, 23 Elliott Obatoyinbo.
Bristol United v Gloucester United
15 Luke Arscott, 14 Auguy Slowik, 13 Thretton Palamo, 12 Nick Carpenter, 11 Elias Caven, 10 Billy Searle, 9 Andy Uren, 1 Jack O’Connell, 2 Chris Brooker, 3 Jamal Ford-Robinson, 4 Giorgi Nemsadze, 5 Sam Jeffries, 6 Nick Koster, 7 Olly Robinson, 8 Nick Fenton-Wells (c).
Replacements: 16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Ollie Dawe, 18 James Hall, 19 BJ Edwards, 20 Rayn Smid, 21 Alex Haynes, 22 James Newey, 23 Gareth Maule.
15 Carwyn Penny, 14 Tom Seabrook, 13 Tom Hudson, 12 Elliott Creed, 11 Harry Robinson, 10 Mat Protheroe, 9 Callum Braley (c), 1 Cameron Orr, 2 Greg Jackson, 3 Josh McNulty, 4 Joe Batley, 5 Tom Denton, 6 Lewis Ludlow, 7 Dan Thomas, 8 Gareth Evans.
Replacements: 16 Joe Mullis, 17 Ciaran Knight, 18 Nicky Thomas, 19 Freddie Clarke, 20 Harry Wilson, 21 Charlie Beckett, 22 Ben Vellacott, 23 Dan Cole.
Harlequins A v Exeter Braves
15 Aaron Morris, 14 Charlie Walker, 13 Winston Stanley, 12 Harry Sloan, 11 Ross Chisholm, 10 Ruaridh Jackson, 9 Luc Jones, 1 Owen Evans 2 Charlie Piper, 3 Adam Jones, 4 Sam Twomey, 5 Charlie Matthews, 6 George Naoupu, 7 Archie White, 8 Mat Luamanu.
Replacements: 16 Karl Gibson, 17 Sam Rodman, 18 Matt Shields, 19 Stan South, 20 Henry Cheeseman, 21 James Lang, 22 Sam Aspland-Robinson, 23 Robbie Nairn.
15 Joe Simmonds, 14 Harrison Cully, 13 Max Bodilly, 12 Tom Hendrickson, 11 James Short, 10 Will Hooley, 9 Jack Maunder (c), 1 Carl Rimmer, 2 Elvis Taione, 3 Moray Low, 4 Ollie Atkins, 5 Sam Skinner, 6 Tom Johnson, 7 Ben White, 8 Sam Simmonds.
Replacements: 16 Shaun Malton, 17 Jack Owlett, 18 Will Norton, 19 Sean Lonsdale, 20 Sam Daly, 21 Joe Snow, 22 Ted Landry, 23 Harry Strong.