YOUTH RUGBY: World Cup winner Cohen watches Daventry victory

SPECIAL GUEST - England World Cup winner Ben Cohen poses with Daventry's Under-15s team
SPECIAL GUEST - England World Cup winner Ben Cohen poses with Daventry's Under-15s team

Daventry Under 15s battled to a 15-7 win over St Neots, with a very special guest watching on from the sidelines - former England winger and World Cup winner, Ben Cohen.

With both teams enjoying good seasons in their respective leagues, this match was set for a testing encounter.

Daventry forwards worked hard to seize the initiative and on 12 minutes, their endeavours were well rewarded.

From a stable attacking foundation, the ball was passed out wide and, despite the cold and challenging conditions, the backs created an opening for Joe Pyne to apply the finishing touches to a wonderful team move.

Joe who had to show speed, strength and balance to finish off the move out wide.

Two minutes later, Daecha Balding created a gap and drove through with great determination. With a well-positioned full back still to beat, Daecha showed great composure to effortlessly manoeuvre past the last defensive obstacle and score under the posts.

On 25 minutes, with Daventry showing good control, the visitors provided a reminder that the match was far from over by scoring a well-taken converted try.

With half time in sight and all to play for, it was the hosts who created a well-timed cushion to take into the half time team talk. The impressive Finlay Davies scored his first try for Daventry and was rewarded for his efforts in the first half, and the score at the break was 15-7 to Daventry.

The second half allowed Daventry to apply a superb display of controlled rugby and saw them camped in their opponents final third for a good 60 per cent of the half. Despite this pressure, a well organised St Neot’s defence stood firm and refused to give way and allow Daventry finish the game off.

At the end of the game, Daventry celebrated the victory with a photo opportunity with Cohen, ex-Saints player and member of the England national team that won the 2003 Rugby World Cup.

It was great to see such a high profile visitor at Daventry.

Under 10s

Daventry Under 10s enjoyed a very even and competitive morning against a promising Brackley side.

With a slightly smaller squad than normal due to unavailability Daventry played two games and every player played two halves.

In recent weeks in training, the players have been working on ball handling and passing the ball.

It was especially pleasing to see Liam run in a great try and Joe score both following good passes from Max who was acting as first receiver.

The counter rucking and ability to steal the ball is improving with Will, Lee and Max strong in this area.

Will was player of the morning after an action packed performance. He carried, he tackled he rucked and lead by example as captain.

Ewan and Jack are developing well and continue to improve match by match and it was especially pleasing to see Tyler really get involved in the last 10 minutes.

The big positive of the day was in the last game.

Daventry trailed by four scores, but the boys kept their heads up in tough conditions and produced a quite memorable comeback to draw the match.

Thanks to Brackley for a great morning.