Steven in de nieuwsbrief:
After the last game against the Gooi was cancelled due to the small amount of players of AAC it was clear that from then on every game was to be played, no matter what. I do not know what the reason was but all of a sudden we saw two not so new faces appearing at the club last Thursday. And they even pointed out to be available on Saturday, great! (note: a prize winning contest for the person that reveals the names of these two forwards???).
Anyway on forehand there were some problems with respect to the pitches of AAC, at first it looked like we had to play away in Etten-Leur (REL). Fortunately the final text message was send just in time that confirmed we could play at home, hell yeah!
When I entered the clubhouse it was clear that we even had some substitutions (and more than three first rowers) so that there was no excuse not to play our hearts out. Also RTV Noord Holland was set to show a short documentary or something about our tough season we have this year (TV Noord Holland). So everyone had its latest haircut to be ready for a bit of game face on TV.
REL is a team that is reasonably physical, although they do not appear to be. Some of their guys are passing the age of entering the oldies league but still play in the ereklasse, we had our share of oldies as well.
The game was one of the better we have seen from the 1st team. There was more aggression than I have seen in a long time. On the focus and aggression level we can still improve but at least it was present! REL had some big chunks of meat in the forwards and a tall Ozzie (I believe) in the line out but our scrums where quite reasonable, still a bit scrappy but we have managed to wheel two or three times which has not happened before this season.
Line outs are still a bit of a challenge for AAC (personally also for undersigned). We had lost a couple of line outs to come up with the idea to throw to the second jumper.
Our tactic on forehand was to keep the ball in possession (in rugby it is said that you cannot score if you do not have possession of the ball… duhh) and to not play it too wide. Later on space was created on the outside which resulted in a couple of nice runs, one made by Mark but because of his shit offload he denied undersigned a try, thanks Mark.
REL had a good back line in the sense that they knew how to find the extra man, every time their fullback joined the backline and he had quite a pace. The centers wanted to get rid of the ball after Rimni had tackled their balls out quite a few times, that resulted in an increase of mistakes on their side. Unfortunately they were able score a few times though.
Mauling is another aspect AAC has to work on, some tries could have been avoided if we would go in lower and have more composure. I have to say as well that our defense from time to time was really good and by defending as best as we could we have managed to save some tries within our own 22.
We even had the opportunity to score a try, from a big maul and some rucks the ball was 1 inch from the try line. We fought for that inch, we were willing to die for that inch…….. until JJ knocked it on and everything was for nothing…
After the best second half of the season we have shown to still possess fighting spirit. We were not backing down but stood and played rugby, mistakes were made, things went wrong… but we stayed positive and willing to play rugby, more psychical than normally. That is what I really liked about our game yesterday.
Rest me to finish with thanking some people, oldies Richard en my brother a.k.a. Mad Mike. Thanks for helping our team through. Also Liam for being there although sick as a dog.
With this game in mind I am ready to fight my way to the end of the season, let’s show that spirit and uplift ourselves even more! AAC, passion, pride and commitment, I have noticed it all yesterday.