Rugby: 15-a-side friendly-Seybarians triumph in season opener


The Seybarians – a predominantly expatriate team – scored four tries and two conversions to the SRA 15’s one unconverted try, to take the opening encounter 24-5.

The match started with some early Seybarians pressure, but the SRA 15 weathered the storm through some solid defence and the match remained scoreless for much of the first half, before a Seybarians’ lineout inside the SRA 15’s 22m line resulted in a series of rucks, which eventually worked their way over the try line.

The Seybarians drove home their advantage with a quick follow-up try, their forwards making repeated drives towards the right-hand side of the SRA15’s try line, creating space for their backs to capitalise on an overlap on the left, shortly before half-time.

After the restart, both teams tested their opponents’ defence, with regular punching runs at outside half and inside centre, but resolute tackling kept the scores unchanged.

However, a Seybarians kick over the SRA 15’s backs caused confusion in the defence and a chipped kick across the try line was pounced on by the Seybarians centre for a try.

The Seybarians added their fourth try through a second kick over the defence, this time catching the SRA 15’s fullback out of position, allowing his Seybarians opposite number to run in the try.

However, the SRA 15’s fitness and determination gained them a consolation try in the final five minutes of the match, as pressure by the SRA 15 forwards forced the ball loose from the Seybarians, and good interplay between the SRA 15’s Fred Hypolite and Silvio Sirame allowed Hypolite to use his pace to sprint clear to the line.

Speaking after the match, SRA 15’s coach Paul Mondon had words of praise for both teams.
“Both sides played well, considering that it was the first match of the season,” he said.
“But I think we can expect to see a big improvement in the standard of play as match fitness returns and the players get back into the challenges of playing competitive rugby.”

Coach Mondon congratulated the Seybarians on their win, but expressed his confidence that the SRA 15 will pose an increasing challenge as the season progresses and they gain experience.

“Today’s match was a good test of what our early season fitness training has achieved. And it’s given us a solid platform to work on to improve our positional play, to strengthen our tackling and bring more structure to our game.”

Monthly fixtures between the SRA 15 and Seybarians have been scheduled for the 2009 rugby season, with additional fixtures expected to be added to the calendar over the course of the year.

The next encounter between the two sides is scheduled to take place at the Mont Fleuri field in the second half of May.

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