TRENTHAM "REPS," AGAINST WELLINGTON. (By "Dropkick.") Last Saturday was a splendid day for the ■opening of the Rugby season — the fifteen a-side game, that is to say, since Seven a-side was played the pi'evious week. Taken altogether" the contest 'at Athletic Park was a good one from the spectator's point of view It should not be judged by the standard of representative games played at tho end of the season ; and, ' considered as an opening match, it Was not in the least disappointing. Lack of condition cotild i have been excused had it" been evident/ but it was not markedly so. _ The Trentham men, fine and fit physically, have been hardened evert by a comparatively short spell -of camp life. Drilling and marching improve- the- powers of endurance, and it required jitst a little more violent exercise to shako off stiffness. ■The Wellington men were also very keen, and kept on tho ball very well. Combination, of course, was- not to be expected in great measure in' either team^The Trentham men had not played together.before; but they were not Rugby beginners. They knew all the fine points of the game, and before" the end of the second spell they developed a powerful attack ' Each man might not have understood exactly the tactics of the man who played beside him, but there were but few instances of attacks j being i spoilt because support was" not given to the right man at the right time. Wellington might" have been expected to do' better in combined play, for many of the mem> bers 4 of the team were club members and others had played- in various- representative, matches. As it was, they fell rather short of expectations. Trenfcham had a. surprising back team. There was A. Ross, an Auckland representative at half-back, E. Roberts (who needs no < introduction), and 8. Cameron (Taranaki representative) at five-eighths j F- Wilson (University representative player), G, Murray (Wellington and Auckland representative), and J. K. Ellis, of South Auckland, in the three-quarter line with a representative full-back in Adadis. It Would have been astonishing if these men had not been able to 'get together, in a little while and give their opponents something to think about— and with very little time for the thinking. .They did come together eventually, but not right at the start. For a while here wbb a lack of cohesion between the backs and the forwards, and no -clear definition oi motive. Of course, every player was agreed upon the necessity for scoring and preventing the other team from gaining ground, but there was not the same agreement upon the' means for the attainment of this end. Hence, the forwards preferred to keep the ball to themselves,' until they found that they had backs of some ability. Backs also were inclined to act as individuals, instead of as members of 'a team. Ross, when the ball came out of the scrum, sent it away, but Roberts did not send it on at once. He tried to do too much on his own account, and sometimes spoilt an opportunity for his supporters. This, however, was only at first. He soon weighed the" value of his men, and then he gave them plenty to do. Ross, it may be stated here, proved his value at half-back. Though small in stature, he stood up to the forwards well, and was never bustled or nervous. Roberts was as clever as the Roberts of old, and when he passed more freely his play was very pretty to watch. , Cameron, the other tive-eighths'maivshowed his powers best in opening 'tip- a 'tlghfcpa'cked game; A powerful, straight runner, it took some tackling to stop him.. In ' the threequarters line Murray had the ball fairly frequently, but it did not come to the wings so .often,. Wellington, wheneverpossible," smothered the rushes early, bo that there was very little opportunity for judging the qualities of Wilson and Ellis. The latter snowed a nice turn of speed on 6no or two Occasions, but Wilson had very little part in the game except when he obtained' thi ball in the open. Adams Was quite satisfactory at full-back. On one or two occasions, he' took risks, endeavouring to intitiate attacks in his own twenty-five, instead Of finding the line ; but -as no' disaster followed it must be considered that he judged well the extent of the risk before taking it. THE LOCAL MEN. Ryan might have been expected to show to best advantage in the Wellington rearguard, but. his work, though solid, Was not brilliant. He attempted to make , openings, ,but his team was not working over-well together and the efforts produced no definite result. More conspicuously successful was Algar, who managed to break away with the ball on several occasions. MacEwan and Morris did their best in the thi'ee-quarter line. Morris had one or two dashes for the goal-line, and, though he failed to win through, his attempts were praiseworthy. MacEwan ( had _ fewer opportunities of displaying his speed. A steady and safe game was played by Prendeville, full-back. . In the 1 .forwards the honours were fairly 'even; Trentham had' superior weight in the scrams, but they did not use itv to tile 'best advantage and could not hook the ball but clearly. With a, little practice, however, their scrum pack would be difficult to beat. In packed work also they were the better, and this gained the team, at least one try, Wellington generally won oii the line-out, and were the equals 'of their opponents in the loose. Wilson did a great deal in these branches of the, game, and other forwards followed his example. Downing, the heavy Auckland forward, was most prominent in the Trentham pack. " DOOLAN! " "Doolan" was the name of the Trentham forward— there was only One. At least that was the ' impression gained from listening to a group of camp supporters. , Kb' matter who might be the white-jerseyed man who was leading a rush, taking a pass, or otherwise distinguishing himself, the cry was, "Well done, Doolan J" "Go it, Doolan !" "At the double, Doolan 1" "Doolan/' individually and collectively, played splendidly anyway, and should have satisfied the numerous trainers and critics on the banks. PUBLIC SCHOOLS UNION. The Wellington Public Schools' Rugby Union has elected the 'following officers for the year,:— President, Mi\ J. Burns; secretary and" treasurer. Sir. E. tt. Ward ; management committee, Messrs. J. Lynsky, M'Bain, W, S. Baskerville, C. Robertson, and F. H. Hemplernan. The election of a management committee is a liew departure, and a wise one. In former years school Rugby has been the general concern of everybody, and if it has been the particular concern of some the Union is lucky. It is much wiser to put a special committee in charge of the woik, then the work will bo done without doubt. If it is not .■someone can be blamed, and that is at least some satisfaction. ' This year promises to be a bright one for school Rugby. More senior teams have entered than last and the number of juniors is the same. Keen competition may bo looked forward \to in both grades. Matches commenced this week, senior being played at Athletic Park and junior on city reserves. Enthusiasm for the Rugby game uhows no sign of waning |tt JJia^tihoolst .TUat'-is.jia'it diguid
be ; If the game is to be kept clean, bright, and popular players cannot be taken in hand too early Learning to be good sports at school they will play the game as all Rugby men should. Any little trouble taker or encouragement given to juvenile. Eugbyites will , be as profitable an investment as any management committee ever made.
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RUGBY, Evening Post, Volume LXXXIX, Issue 108, 8 May 1915
RUGBY Evening Post, Volume LXXXIX, Issue 108, 8 May 1915
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