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U18s put 40 points past Bristol

The London Wasps Academy U18 side recorded their third win from four games with a 40-24 win over Bristol.

After the weather conditions had made Bristol’s pitches unplayable, the game was moved to the all-weather surface at Maidenhead RFC.

Academy Coach Chris Lloyd reports from the game:

“We are obviously pleased to score 40 points and win. The Wasps lads played well, particularly in the second half. Maybe it’s the old front five forward in me but I was really pleased with the set-piece platform our young forwards gave us against an abrasive and much bigger pack.

To be fair to Bristol, the score line perhaps flatters us a little as we did score an interception try off the last play of the game. However, I feel the lads earned their scores by sticking together against a good team and applying plenty of pressure with and without the ball. We did concede four tries and I am sure we will all reflect on how we can tighten up our defence in the coming games.

It was definitely the clichéd game of two halves. We started well and got two tries on the board early but then we lost a bit of focus and as a result lost our shape, didn’t take our chances and then gave up possession at key moments, losing our composure. As a result, we went in at half time 14-12 down, which was probably fair. At that point the break allowed us to re-group.

At half time we talked to the lads about sticking together and giving a team performance; clearly they took it on board as we scored 28 points in the half! They delivered that in the second half, which was very pleasing. We felt the excellent team leadership by the captain, and also the half-backs, really allowed us to constantly challenge the gain line and control territory. That was a real step forward for us as a team.

Despite playing pretty well in the second half we must give credit to Bristol because we just couldn’t seem to get a clear margin ahead of what was a very committed and positive opposition. Our lads should be very pleased with the fact they weathered the storm and came through it with a Wasps win.

Two particularly pleasing aspects of the performance were that quite a few players got their first starts and that we had a very young side. The squad had plenty of under 17’s in it and they performed well, which bodes well for the future.

In the games so far we have given a lot of player’s starts and tried to get a good spread of match time for as many lads as possible. That, perhaps, comes at a bit of a cost as we have been learning to play together each time we have run out. The lads have learnt plenty and as coaches we have also learnt a great deal about them as players.

As a side note, it was great to see and hear the Wasps support at the game and we hope to see that kind of support again soon as we have another two quality teams coming up in the next two weeks in Harlequins at home next week, and Exeter away the following. The lads know they need to perform well in those games and I know they are really looking forward to the challenge.”

Timeline

5-0 Wasps Try - Dan Barnes
10-0 Wasps Try - Joel Harvey
12-0 Wasps Conversion - Louis Clayton-Molloy
12- 7 Bristol Try & Conversion
12-14 Bristol Try & Conversion

Half Time

17-14 Wasps Try - Matt Blandford
19-14 Wasps Conversion - Louis Clayton-Molloy
24-14 Wasps Try – Dan Barnes
26-14 Wasps Conversion – Louis Clayton-Molloy
26-19 Bristol Try
31-19 Wasps Try – Tom Howe
33-19 Wasps Conversion – Alex Harrison
33-24 Bristol Try
38-24 Wasps Try – Tom Howe
40-24 Wasps Conversion – Alex Harrison

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