The OH Gents traveled down to Bournemouth bright and early Saturday morning for the 2nd British Beach Rugby championships with a strong squad of 11 players and Rob Petherick offering his expertise in the role of coach while his body continues to mend.
First up was Bournemouth University and it was a winning start for the OH, putting together a dazzling display to win 5-0. Tries to Bradley 2, Higgins 2, and Hudson.
With a little bit of a break before our next game (and match-up against the eventual winners from Marseille), the OH made sure we kept up our hydration with the conditions a warm 22 degrees and sunny.
Some of the lads found it a little more warmer than others, as Gibbo and many others quickly slipping into their Budgy Smugglers to keep cool and subsequently cause a flutter in some of the female supporters' hearts.
The team from Marseille were next and the OH quickly learnt what Beach Rugby was about, as they crashed over for five unanswered tries in the first half. Some tough words at half time from the Skip and Higgins were the catalysts to an improved effort, scoring a try but in the end it was a humbling loss 9-1. Try to Van Lierde.
A quick rest and the OH faced the well-spirited Old Goats (who were a local team from Bournemouth I think), unfortunately their high morale was no match for the force of the OH, as the lads in the blue and white GENTS kit dazzled ahead 5-0 at half time. Drafting in a couple of players from the women's the side, the Old Goats showed a bit more, but still struggled to compete with the class and flair of the OH. A terrific 9-1 win and put our semi final hopes back on track. Tries to Gee 2, Bradley 1, Higgins 1, Lough 1, Torran 1, Gibson 1, Luke Davies 1 and Yasha 1.
The final game for the OH was perhaps their finest performance, proving their worth against last year's winner the Pacific Islanders in an epic contest. We would eventually go down 8-4, but it was a strong effort against a side who been on the European Beach rugby scene for years and OH was only in their second year at Bournemouth. Tries to Gee 2, Gibson 1, and Lough 1.
Top try scorer was Mr Alex Gee, who will be worked on to come down to the OH full-time next season. If you see him at touch rugby on a Wednesday night, make sure you encourage him to sign up.
Player of the tournament for the OH was Luke Davies for a terrific performance on the pitch and after the game at the closing ceremony after party.
A big thanks to Tom Huckin and Matt Craig for the club's support to allow the OH to head down to Bournemouth for what was a terrific weekend of beach rugby and building up for what is going to be a monster year in Surrey 1 and the Reserve League Championship.
If you've not been down to touch on a Wednesday night, dust off the mouldies or runners and come throw the ball around and build up the fitness. Numbers have been terrific so far with 25+ coming down so far each week. Location is Clapham Common (google maps where Wandsworth Demons AFL team trains for the exact spot) at 6:45pm each Wednesday night.
Hearts & Wings
OH 2nd XV Captain
Updated 13:52 - 9 Jul 2018 by Philip Huckin