21 Oct Cheltenham Civil Service Ladies vs Brockworth Ladies
A big thank you to Helen Stanton for organising a friendly against local rivals Brockworth Ladies in light of the league match with Towcester Ladies having been rescheduled. Service rose to the occasion with a clinical performance from both forwards and backs, delivering a 27-5 win on what was a beautiful Indian Summers day in late October.
From the initial kick off, the realisation soon hit that Brockworth were a development side that should be taken seriously. A defiant push from their forward pack was rewarded with a try within the first few minutes, putting Service behind from the get-go.
Despite the visitors taking an early lead, Service responded swiftly with a Roman Ball lineout delivery into the hands of Jess Yeates, who caught Brockworth defensively off guard and leapt down to score at the corner. Further impressive scores soon rattled in; the forward pack negotiated gaps in the defence and patiently executed a series of pick and goes, with Lucy Wood serving the final blow, touching down for a try.
It wasn’t just the forwards having fun however, as Hannah Smith managed her backs effectively, leading to Tzara Marriott shooting down the right wing minutes after the restart to score at the flag. Fellow winger Georgie Keene shortly followed with a touch down under the posts from superb hands down the line, assisted by Ashlyn Steyn and centre Sarah Boyles. Further defensive pressure from Service within the Brockworth 22 led to a spilled ball, taken advantage of by ex. footballer Lucy Burnett who wouldn’t be out of place on ‘Match of the Day,’ kicked and chased the loose ball over the line to score the fifth and final try of the game just before half time.
At the break, a series of substitutions and position changes gave Service the ability to try out some new moves. The 2ndhalf wasn’t as straightforward as the 1st however, with Brockworth stepping up a gear in defence and highlighting their up and coming team credentials to deny Service of two tries at the whitewash, despite having a one man overlap after an earlier Brockworth yellow card.
Further changes were made to the squad in the final quarter, with Chloe Toft running out for her first game in a Service shirt while returning debutant fullback Carmel Belcher complimented the backs play. Lisa Lancett and Vicky Giles also showed off some impressive ball handling skills and sprints down the wing. The hosts were unable to capitalise on the 1sthalf momentum but were delighted with 27-5 at the final whistle.
We wish Brockworth Ladies the very best for the remainder of the season in gaining their development fixtures and building upon their strong team foundation. After a few weeks break, Service will resume their league campaign on Remembrance Sunday at home to Tewkesbury Ladies.
Forwards: Helen Stanton, Imogen Byrne, Lucy Wood, Flora Hodges, Salome Ash, Amber Coxhill, Ashlyn Steyn, Katie Lake, Faye Walton, Jess Yeates, Sarah Schachhuber Bond
Backs: Ali Jones, Tzara Marriott, Lucy Burnett, Sarah Boyles, Cat Wallace, Hannah Smith, Lauren Dransfield, Lisa Lancett, Georgie Keene, Chloe Toft, Vicky Giles, Carmel Belcher
Try scorers: Jess Yeates x 1, Lucy Wood x 1, Tzara Marriott x 1, Georgie Keene x 1, and Lucy Burnett x 1
Conversions: Hannah Smith x 1
Forward of the Match: Lucy Wood
Back of the Match: Sarah Boyles
Brockworth’s Wo(man) of the Match: Lucy Burnett