Score: LOST 34 – 5
Referee: Dave Cotterill
Captain: Ant Balocca
Man of the Match: Carl Ramage
The second match of the season and already we are better than last year as we have had 1 win (Last week due to Eltham not turning up).
With a better turn up of players 14 (as compared with 12 at Southern Districts) and a few University players we took the field against a much larger and younger Melbourne side.
The run on team consisted of 2 new players, Cameron Gardiner and Chris Van der Merwe (another Sth. African Schoolboy trialist) and 1 old stager Bryan. The first 10 minutes the game ebbed and flowed up and down the ground with the forwards contesting in the rucks and Quinton Ritchie (recently returned from the Asian League) sending the backs on deep probing runs into the Melbourne territory.
Melbourne scored twice within 8 minutes and despite desperate defence were 10 points up nearing half time. A concerted effort by the forwards driving deep into Melbourne’s half saw the backs brought down short of the line. The ensuing maul won, the backs forged towards the line and Carl Ramage crossed for 5 points. Alex Tautau elected to take the conversion and decided to try a drop cross kick which landed near the opposing touch line. It was decided by the coaching panel to give any more conversion attempts to Ant. Unfortunately there were no more.
Half time came and during the break we heard the sad news that Kevin Heath had passed away this morning. A minutes silence in remembrance of Kevin by both teams was held before the second half kickoff.
Despite hard running by the backs and stout defence by the forwards we were unable to score again and Melbourne ran in another 4 tries. The forwards supported each other and were unlucky not to score. The backs played the best running rugby we have seen for over a year and augers well for the season if we can maintain the passion. The game was played in good spirits.
Lots of authors over the years!