Match Report
The Manchester Grammar School U16 vs  Kirkham Grammar School
On: Saturday, 12 Oct 2019
Venue: at Home

The MGS U16 started the cold saturday morning with a list of injuries and players unable to play, but 15 players were strung together and a much appreciated late arrival from Louis R gave MGS a sub. Many players were in different positions to their preferred ones, however many of them put in great performances. The kick off went high and deep and MGS pinned Kirkham back in their own 22 for around 25 mins. With a slightly wet pitch there were many knock ons that led to possession changes. A great defensive effort put on by both teams but MGS began to get the better of a Kirkham that appeared to be rattled. Kirkham however looked very strong in the scrums with a much more experienced forward pack. MGS managed to keep pressing Kirkham back with many kicks from Kirkham unable to make touch. Kirkham finally managed to make I into the MGS 22 but were faced with an outstanding defensive performance from MGS allowing them to regain possession and make it to the Kirkham 22. Going into half time with a 0-0 score line, MGS looked to have got the better of Kirkham but unable to convert chances into points. A great take by Tom C under pressure from kick off to resume the game, the second half continued to be similar to the first. Soon the MGS backs found time with the ball and the new centre partnership of Aatif A and Isaac O saw some eye-catching bursts of speed and strength. Another game with great feed for the backs from Sam M allowed Ben B and the backs to find some space and continue to drive Kirkham back. 10 mins into the second half MGS worked their way towards Kirkamh's 5. Kirkham tried to kick it away but Sam M managed to apply pressure on the kicker who kicked it to Harry M who passed the ball out to Aatif who had Isaac outside him but he managed to break through a handful of tackles from the Kirkham back line to push over the try line and secure five points. The conversion was only just wide from Mo Q. Kirkham riled up kicked deep to MGS and managed to win the ball back within the MGS 22, their freakishly large 12 then managed to break through the blue wall of MGS players to score under the posts, Kirkham converted and took the lead. MGS put up a great defensive performance with Sam putting in some great tackles. The forwards who were helped by Nick G from the second team also had outstanding display of strength, Dan F, Henry D and many others put in a massive shift. The two forward wingers Nathan B and Henry C played very well making some brilliant tackles and runs.With the match coming to a bit of a stalemate after Kirkham's try something needed to be done. With two forwards on the wing for MGS the Kirkham outside centre saw the space and ran around the line, with only 5m to go an amazing tap tackle was made by Mo Q to push the centre into touch and save a try from being conceded. MGS began to build their way back into the game by wining penalties and kicking Kirkham back to their 22. One kick from Kirkham went straight to Tommy E who caught it and began to run at the terrified Kirkham winger. Thus display of athleticism from Tommy meant he had to take a break and was subbed off for Louis R who put in a great performance but was injured after about 10 mins. MGS persevered through and used forwards to barge their way into Kirkham's half. With a central penalty not too far out, MGS decided to go for points. Mo stood up to take the kick, looking to redeem his questionable kicking in Thursdays game. As everyone went silent Mo managed to get the three points and MGS were 8-7 up with 4 mins to go. The MGS players knew all they had to do was keep the ball safe amongst the forwards. Alas the final whistle blew and a cheer of relief and joy came from MGS as they had finally beaten Kirkham. There were many outstanding performances on Saturday from the the backs and forwards, Aatif made some great runs, as did the rest of the backs and the forwards managed to stay solid throughout the whole game in attack and defence. But Mo Q and Sam M both deserve Man of the Match.