First win of the season
By Craig Charlie Varley
Girls return to Rugby with Win
It was nearly the start of March and on a spring like Sunday in Leicestershire it had finally come around, the first game of the new year for the Hinckley Vixens.
Hinckley, with a near full squad, had prepared well over the past months with games being postponed due to weather and other issues but they were all up for the welcoming of Paviours for the return fixture of the RFUW Under 15s midlands league match. Paviours had won at home earlier in the season. The Hinckley team were looking for a full on 10 aside game against a team they believed they had a chance to beat but due to Paviors having some late withdrawals with illness it was decided to have a 7 aside league match which then caused selection headaches for the coaching staff.
The game started with Hinckley receiving from the kick off ,facing into the February sun. Straight from the kick off Hinckley controlled the ball with their talismanic Captain, Lucy 'Tonks' Tomkinson, who went on one of her trademark Tonks trundles powering through the Paviours defence, but some last ditch tackling brought her to terra ferma. Excellent back up from the team carried the move on, with scrum half Megan Varley linking the play from forwards to backs releasing Tasha Lucas on a couple of occasions ; last ditch tackling from Paviours snubbed this out.
The Hinckley Girls forced Paviours in to some last ditch tackling on their own line and after a reset scrum, Scrum Half Megan Varley scooted from back of the scrum and forced her way over for the opening try which was then converted by Emma Warrington (7-0). This increased the Vixens confidence and again from the kick the ball was controlled by Lucy 'Tonks' Tomkinson and some good forwards play and linking between Megan Varley and Emma Warrington sent Pippa Butler through. After fending off some valiant defence, the ball was touched down but Vixens were unable to convert (12-0).
The Game carried on with the Vixens forwards dominating the break down, but annoying knock-ons stopped them increasing their score. Link play from forwards to backs was making it hard for the Paviours players to stay with the Vixens leading to the third try of the game for Lauren Rigby. Not be out done by her fellow prop, she went on a ‘riggers’ rumble, and after a strong hand off she was able to touch down in the corner but again Vixens were unable to Convert from a difficult angle. The Paviours kicker tried to vary her kick off,which was not the best idea as it was received by Robyn Sadler who went on a strong run taking 3 Paviours players with her. The ball was popped up to Lucy ‘Tonks’ Tomkinson who went to ground and set the ball perfectly for Megan Varley thereby releasing Pippa Butler to storm in for her 2nd try of the day , again not converted. Half time (22-0).
The second half led to wholesale changes on the Hinckley side with Lucy, Lauren, Robyn, and Tasha taking a rest and bringing on Holly Bedford, Zoe Coyne, Ellie Burbidge, and Lottie Bozon. Hinckley kicked off and it seemed that Paviours were reinvigorated by the break and started to cause Hinckley some issues in the loose. It was Hinckley who spent a lot of time on the defensive leading to Paviours being denied through some last ditch tackling, but from Hinckley being offside, Paviours powered through for their first try which was unconverted. From the kick off Paviours rose in confidence and again forced Hinckley into last ditch tackling on their line and quick recycling of the ball for Paviours caused an overlap and Paviours went in for their second try which again was unconverted.
This led to a tactical substitution with the return of Lucy, Lauren, and the introduction of Emily Hines-Randle, and Alice Allen (making her debut) to come on to the pitch. With their Captain back on the pitch leading from the front, the team started to push forward and some good searching runs from Emma Warrington and Emily Hines-Randle forced Paviours back. A quick break and good hands from Megan Varley to Emma Warrington led to Emma going over for the fifth try of the day, this again was unconverted. The game was ebbing and flowing but Paviours were unable to break a resolute Hinckley defence which again led to a break from Megan Varley offloading in the tackle to Emma Warrington, and Alice Allen picking up and driving over the line taking 3 Paviours players with her to score her maiden try on her debut. Robyn Sadler converted and the referee blew for the end of a hard but entertaining game for both sets of players and parents.
I Hope that all of the girls involved for Hinckley today are as proud of their achievements as Craig, Helen, and John are, and I apologise if any of you feel you were not given enough time on the pitch. It was a very difficult situation I was put in as Paviours only turned up with 7 players, we had 13 and time ran away, please do not feel downhearted and I tried to speak to the parents of players who were not given enough time on the pitch, my apologies if I didn’t speak to your parents and I will speak to them as soon as I can. A big thank you has to go out to Paviours for playing the game, and the drive and fight shown by their girls in a difficult situation was a credit to them and their club.
Players: Lucy Tomkinson (Captain); Pippa Butler; Robyn Sadler; Emma Warrington; Lauren Rigby; Megan Varley; Emily Hines-Randle; Alice Allen; Tasha Lucas; Lottie Bozon; Zoe Coyne; Holly Bedford; Ellie Burbidge.