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Wasps AASE narrowly miss out against London Irish

Henley College (London Wasps) 20 v 23 St Pauls College (London Irish)

AASE U18 League – Wed 12th Oct – 7.00pm kick off at Henley RFC

Wasps, under the name of Henley College, took on London Irish, under the name of St. Paul's College, on Wednesday 12th October. It was a fantastic evening under lights at Henley RFC with a large crowd of around 200 supporters who were presented with a hugely entertaining game of the highest quality. Without question the AASE U18 League has to be the strongest U18 League in the country. This of course is further endorsed by some 70 percent of the current England U18 squad playing their rugby in AASE Colleges.

For London Wasps this was a clear indication of the future direction for youth development, particularly considering a transfer of resource from Twyford High School to Henley College is currently underway with the playing squad split between the two sites. The transfer will be complete by July 2012. To produce this level of quality from development group which is cirrently split in two was very impressive and a great credit to all coaches and players.

The game was played at great pace and intensity, with St Pauls having the physical edge and Henley College the pattern and skill over their opponents. Great movement and early pressure from Henley College early on led to some good work from George Eastwell and Jonno Woodward breaking the St Pauls defence and putting Liam O’ Neill in for the first score, converted by Eastwell. Henley continued to press the St Pauls line which held out by strong St Pauls defence. Eastwell converted a penalty as Henley maintained pressure on the St Pauls line. As half time approached, St Pauls narrowed the 10 point margin.

After half time, St Paul's followed up their score late in the first half with another penalty early in the second. St Pauls started to apply pressure on the Henley line midway through the second half resulting in a converted try and a further penalty taking the score to 10 – 16 in St Pauls favour. Henley mounted a series of attacks and were creating opportunities across the park, only being held out by strong defence. A further Henley penalty reduced the deficit to 3 points with 10 minutes remaining. A brilliant combined work by the forwards and the backs took Henley to within metres of the St Pauls try line, where scrum half Jack Daly darted over to complete a fine team effort. Fly half Eastwell struck a great conversion from out wide to put Henley in a strong position leading by 20pts to 16pts. Great credit should go to St Pauls, who then mounted a series of one out attacks with big ball carriers pounding the Henley line, faced by resolute defence by Henley, but finally driving over the top of a ruck with the referee excellently positioned to award the try, which was duly converted to end the game.

Credit should go to both teams for a very competitive, high quality match, thoroughly enjoyed by the large crowd.

Wasps would like so encourage all supporters to get along to the next match, planned for 2nd Nov at Henley RFC – 6.30 pm kick off against Ivybridge – please check arrangements closer to the date as they do tend to change.

Henley College Team

15 Ollie Foster
14 Zac Maiden
13 Lewys Weaver
12 Jonno Woodward
11 Liam O’Neil
10 George Eastwell
9 Jack Daly

1 Tom Mawle
2 Ryan Kirby
3Tom Rowlands
4 Kia George
5 Luke Paynter
6 Connor Morrison
7 Harry McCartney
8 Oskar Hirskyj

Substitutes

16 Craig Parker
17 Tom Inglis
18 Owyn Thatcher
19 Keiran Duffin

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