Aberdeen Wanderers V Ellon U16
Tough battle at Wanderers for the high flying Ellon Youth team
U16 played Aberdeen Wanderers in the local League and the game became a very tense affair! Not normally known as a big local derby, this game quickly became one! With only 14 players available Ellon played the Wanderers 15 and started slowly in the face of a strong and very physical Wanderers pack. Constantly under pressure Ellon eventually conceded a try and found themselves 5-0 down. The Ellon forwards slowly got themselves back into the game and started to compete in the breakdown. Quicker ball to release the backs soon paid dividend and a Ross Greig try under the posts, converted by Nathan Shirron, was soon followed by a try from Ryan Notton following a good back row move. The first half was closely contested and a Greig breakaway try in the corner was closely followed by another Wanderers try - half time score 17-17.
In the second half the Ellon pack continued to work hard against a very physical Wanderers front 8 but Ellon always looked dangerous when the backs had ball in hand. The pivotal moment occurred after a Wanderers turnover following an Ellon breakaway. The Wanderers fly half won the ball but he was quickly tackled by Ewan Cowie who then received a punch to the face for his efforts. A coming together of some players following this incident resulted in an Ellon player - who had stepped in to push players away - rather unfairly receiving a yellow card whilst the Wanderers instigator went unpunished. This incident changed the game. Down to 13 players, instead of dropping their heads, Ellon channeled their frustrations into playing the best rugby of the match. The forwards got stuck in and worked fiercely in the breakdown and an early ball to Shirron saw him break through several tackles and make a quick offload to Greig who out-sprinted the Wanderers winger and ran in a try from his own half. Several minutes later the same players executed a similar move resulting in another Greig try which was converted by Shirron. Remarkably Ellon opened up a 12 point lead during the time they were down to 13. Ellon kept playing gutsy rugby and despite Wanderers efforts Ellon kept it together. The nail in the coffin for Wanderers was a Greig interception on the halfway line which saw him out pace the opposing full back and winger to touch down between the posts. Shirron kicked the conversion.
All in all this was a quite remarkable game played with great team spirit and heart by all the Ellon U16s who were the deserved winners by 36 - 17.