CCGS Rugby Play Italian Top Teams

12th November 2014

The Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School rugby tour has always been a great event for players and coaches alike to really bond as a unit and this year’s visit to Venice was no different. Lasting five days from Wednesday 22nd to Sunday 26th of October, the tour saw the squad achieve one win from two matches.

On the first day, after settling in to our local surroundings, the team went straight into a training session to run off the journey and prepare for the tough opposition which faced us the next day.  Training on the beach produced a productive session with a high intensity workout, combatting the days early start.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

Day 2 saw our first fixture in the evening Vs Benetton Treviso and with the name came tough opposition as expected, they were a tough and quick opposition. Sadly we lost this tough physical battle with an all-round better team 52-21. Although losing, strong performances from the whole team more notably man of the match Matt Short and Rory Middleton provided us something to work with at training the next day. The fantastic post match hospitality from the Pro12 team made the loss seem distant, and the touring party enjoyed a great meal together, before heading back to our hotel.

The Friday saw the team straight back into a morning training session which was quick and sharp, focusing solely on perfecting all of the set plays we had learnt as a team, before heading off to an evening game versus Padova. Once again the team gave it their all, utilising moves perfected in training to reach a winning start early on, with man of the match Steve Jones running hard to score twice. These efforts were rewarded and Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School had a 10-0 lead by half time. However Padova were to come back strongly in the second half but the players proved ever determined in defence with key defensive play by fullback Steve Dolan and Matt Short who left the field concussed for his efforts. Despite Chatham’s solid defence Padova crashed over for a well-deserved score in the last minute to see the game end 13-7 to Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School.

Saturday was a day visit to Venice exploring the cultural sites of the city. The team enjoyed sightseeing and shopping and the all- round morale from the team was high after a day of rest to reflect on our win the previous night with the highlights of the day being the Piazza San Marco and the Gondola boats.

Overall the boys saw tour as a success as the main aim was to become a better team and that is what has happened, hopefully the progression from tour will carry on into the rest of the season and help Chatham and Clarendon Grammar School overcome and do even better than last year’s successful season.

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