After two weeks of pulling together sides by borrowing players from the opposition, head coach Daran was glad to have enough players for a starting nine plus one substitute for the friendlies at Delft. Three matches were played against Delft and two Rotterdam teams, with fine team play by BSN.

A full squad - hurrah!

A full squad – hurrah!

The first match was against Rotterdam, who had inflicted defeat on BSN in the Districts three weeks earlier. BSN started well, with good passing, but had a tendency to cut inside after the second pass. Unlike at the Districts, Delft had laid out good sized pitches and the width was to BSNs advantage. There was good teamwork and Sean, loaned from the Turvens was making an impression with some good crunching tackles. BSN were five up at half time, with tries from Aiden, Henry, Will and Jamie.

Will stretching the defence

Will stretching the defence

In the second half, Will scored straight from a turnover of the Rotterdam restart. Duncan scored two; one an impressive diagonal run past the entire Rotterdam team into the right corner, when a much more straightforward direct run along the left wing would have been the easier route to the line. Luc, Aiden, Sean, and Erben added to the score.

The rucking was good, but there were a few occasions, when only one player was in support, which was too easy for the big Rotterdam players to push off. Nevertheless, it was comfortable for BSN and the match ended 15-0; a very different Rotterdam performance from the one that beat BSN at the Districts.

Player of the match Nicholas, with his eye on the ball

Player of the match Nicholas, with his eye on the ball

With the cake provided by Nannette, Hugo’s mum, the traditional “Who’s gonna win, BSN” was muffled by the full mouths and sounded more like, “Huvs vuvva ven, Vee-Veff-Venn,” before the second match against the home side, Delft. Aiden still had cake in his mouth when he received the ball, lost his gum shield and took the wise option to run out of play rather than take the tackle on the wing.

It was a tough start and much defensive work was required. After an early try, BSN were on the back foot. Will just managed to tackle an opponent into the corner flag to save a try and then scored a breakaway score at the other end. BSN were making it narrow and running into contact, before a third try came from a string of passes, with Will and Jamie creating space for Sean to run in.

At 3-0 at half time, it felt tight. The half time talk from the coaches was to move the ball onto the wings rather than keep playing in the middle, where the bigger Delft players were winning ground.

The second half started with a ruck on the right wing; Luc and Duncan driving back Delft and winning possession. The ball moved to the left wing, but was held up on the line by resolute Delft defence. BSN then switched the ball out to right wing for a simple run in.

The passing game was on, with Nicholas at the heart of it, and again the ball moved out to the right wing for the fifth try. A flurry of passes between Luc and Sean led to the sixth, a Roux O’Hora family special. More passing from right to left and back again sent Erben in to score the seventh, before Luc broke through the Delft lines for the eighth. It was not all passing and tries. There was a good defensive shift at the heart of the second half performance. Three tackles in a row were made by Hugo to break down the Delft play. Will attempted a Stuart Hogg tip pass that nearly put Aiden in. There was still time for Henry to put in a great covering tackle to save a try and then score at the other end in the final play. It ended 9-0, with BSN’s second half performance a step up in defending and moving the ball.

Luc making the break

Luc making the break

The last match of the day was against Rotterdam 2, who started strongly. Will put in two covering tackles before Luc broke with Duncan in support, who picked up the ball from the breakdown and ran in the try. The move was repeated with another break by Luc and Duncan in support making a sidestep to beat the last man. All the time, Will kept making the tackles to stop Rotterdam gaining a foothold in the match. A third break by Luc nearly put Erben through, but one more pass was needed for the score. BSN’s tails were up and Duncan made it three with a diagonal run to the corner and Will added a fourth from a fine pass by Hugo. From the restart, Rotterdam secret weapon, player ‘F’, came tearing like a runaway train at the centre of the BSN defence, only for Hugo to put the tackle in that stopped the train in its tracks. Luc broke through again, but this time didn’t need the support and went alone to put BSN 5-0 up at half time.

Duncan running the angles

Duncan running the angles

BSN kept the momentum in the second half, passing the ball right to left, before Erben selflessly played in Nicolas to score. Two more Luc breaks put Duncan in for one and then Duncan offloaded to Erben for the next.

At a scrum five yards from the Rotterdam tryline, Sean put pressure on the Rotterdam scrum-half, bundling him out of the deadball line to win BSN a scrum from the same position. Sean got the ball out and it was passed along the line for Duncan to run in the try. The last play of the match went to the captain, Erben who ran in the tenth and final score.

There's nothing stopping Erben!

There’s nothing stopping Erben!

34 tries scored, none conceded, every player scored a try, and good play all round.

Coaches: Daran, Cedric, Manuel
Captain: Erben
Player of the match: Nicholas
Team: Aiden; Duncan; Henry; Hugo; Jamie; Luc; Sean; Will

A-C-D- come on guys, you're one short of a great rock band!

A-C-D- come on guys, you’re one short of a great rock band!