UMS un­lucky in wet, muddy fix­ture

Matamata Chronicle - - Sport -

Reid and Har­ri­son/Waikato Stud UMS 13 Univer­sity 17

UMS hosted front run­ners Univer­sity at a wet, cold and blus­tery Bed­ford Park in this round 16 fix­ture.

What would have warmed the hearts of the play­ers was the great turnout for the inau­gu­ral Old Boys’ Day and what will no doubt be a per­ma­nent fix­ture on the UMS rugby cal­en­dar.

Af­ter last week’s dis­ap­point­ing re­sult UMS needed to fo­cus on putting to­gether an all round per­for­mance. For most parts this was achieved.

Although the weather con­di­tions didn’t suit run­ning rugby what good ball both teams had they used well. The con­test at the set phases was go­ing to be the cru­cial as­pect of the game.

For the first 15 min­utes both teams tried to use the cross wind to their favour but the muddy con­di­tions only al­lowed sim­ple phases to work.

Soon af­ter UMS put to­gether some great ball pos­ses­sion which al­lowed time in the Var­sity half. In the 17th minute Joey Ram­sey, in his de­but game for UMS, neatly con­verted a penalty for UMS to take the lead.

From the kick­off Var­sity put pres­sure on UMS. The home side couldn’t get out of the half and a suc­ces­sion of penal­ties al­lowed Var­sity valu­able ter­ri­tory.

From an en­su­ing li­ne­out penalty Var­sity put a great drive to­gether and scored. Soon af­ter, in what was to be­come a sore point for the UMS for­ward pack, Var­sity re­peated the driv­ing li­ne­out and took the score to 3-10.

What hap­pened on the 25th minute mark was one of the best tries from UMS the home crowd has seen all year. From some great de­fence in the UMS 22, half back Ryan Tuhakaraina saw the open spa­ces, gassed the in­sides and al­lowed room for Vaimoso and Arnold, who at­tacked the out­sides of Var­sity. With the ball go­ing through sev­eral sets of hands Tuhakaraina, who started the at­tack, was on hand to run 25 me­ters to score be­side the posts.

This was con­verted by Ram­sey, tak­ing the score to 10-10, which had the crowd buzzing.

In the 27th minute mark UMS took them­selves into the Var­sity 22 and they in­fringed, al­low­ing Ram­sey to slot another penalty to take UMS to a 13-10 lead.

With the con­di­tions wors­en­ing Var­sity, known for their run­ning, changed tack and grinded away and again were re­warded with a li­ne­out try from a penalty.

With 45 min­utes on the clock Var­sity again were of­fered a chance at a li­ne­out drive and again scored. This was dis­ap­point­ing for UMS, as they had done enough to take the half­time lead.

The sec­ond half with no score was ex­cit­ing as UMS were only a break out away from win­ning the game.

Var­sity were also that four try bonus.

At the fi­nal whis­tle it was bit­ter sweet for UMS to go close to another top four team but to not come away with the win.

The great crowd ap­plauded both

look­ing

for teams as they came off the field in what was a cold and mis­er­able day.

This shows UMS they aren’t far off and also shows the ad­van­tage on cold days in hav­ing a home fix­ture.

Play­ers to shine in the for­wards were Gibbs in the tight along with locks Peters and Vakacegu. In the loose open side Cawker toiled away the en­tire game and his tackle count was the high­est on the field. Cap­tain Alex Bradley was again his bril­liant self and his con­trol from the back of the scrum al­lowed Tuhakaraina some great ball which he used wisely.

Ram­sey at first five was im­pres­sive and looked to take on the Var­sity back­line with some great skills.

At the back, player of the day Vaimoso re­ally took it to the Var­sity team with his di­rected and ag­gres­sive run­ning. This al­lowed UMS front football on reg­u­lar oc­ca­sions and his breaks led to all of UMS’ points.

The Var­sity cap­tain af­ter the fix­ture saluted the ef­forts of UMS.

He well knows the po­si­tion UMS find them­selves in and ad­mit­ted his side were lucky to come away with the points.

With the cel­e­bra­tions for the Old Boy’s Day and the auc­tion of the UMS jer­seys, the club is in good hands. A big thanks to pres­i­dent Aaron Hill and his com­mit­tee for putting on a won­der­ful evening.

Next week UMS Marist in Hamil­ton.

Tries R Tuhakaraina, Con­ver­sion and 2 penal­ties J Ram­sey.

Point scor­ers:

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Photo: TERESA HATTAN

UMS’ com­mem­o­ra­tive jer­seys, worn on An­zac Day, were auc­tioned off at the club’s Old Boys Day on Satur­day.

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