Camden Rugby hosted its 3rd home game in a row, and it did not disappoint the masses as the top 2 grades showed they meant business in 2012.
The day was beautifully sunny, and coming off the back of a solid rounds win over Engadine, Camden turned its attention to the ensuing games against Bowral/Wollondilly, which also doubled as the local derby in the competition.
The 3rd Grade side was looking to record its first back-to-back victories for the season whilst 2nds looked to stamp their authority in the reserve grade comp, and Firsts were looking to capitalise on a week off and some promising early season form.
The day begun with 3rd grade taking on the Wollondilly Waratahs. It was a torrid affair, and points were hard to come by. After continually attacking the Wollondilly line, Camden opened the scoring with a well worked scrum move to Scott Grieco. It wasn’t long before Wollondilly hit back to score and levelled the game at 5-all.
The game was evenly poised, and a field goal edged Wollondilly ahead. Right on the stroke of halftime, Wollondilly took an intercept to extend their lead to 10 points going into the second half.
The second half saw both teams attacking well with both scoring a try a piece. The Rams were held up twice over the line, and a few costly mistakes saw Wollondilly take the spoils and a very deserved victory. Special Mentions to Scott Grieco and Owen Everett who stood tall in defence and had some telling contributions on a losing side.
3rd grade has been the benchmark for the past 2 seasons, but given the rebuilding phase it has undertaken, it will take a few rounds for the young and old to Gel and become a genuine title contender. The pieces are there, along with the attitude and desire.
Reserve grade have grown in leaps and bounds this season, and have been all but exceptional in the opening rounds, and stated their intent on making an assault on this years competition.
They were a whisker away from last years grand final, and it seems the taste of that defeat sits with the bulk of the team, who have hit the ground running. I have seen some good teams at the Club, and this team is as good as any in the 3 years I have been at Camden.
The 2nd XV have benefitted from the new concept introduced for the top 30 players at the Club. They have been the biggest benefactors and it has shown on the Field.
Bowral visited the undefeated Camden 2nds and soon found out, the pain the past 3 teams have felt. Camden Reserves were clinical, methodical and ruthless in dismantling a hapless Bowral side.
The reserves have started the season full with intent, and a willingness to play for each other.
300 gamer and coach Matthew Searle embodies this attitude, and is the heart and soul of this no nonsense team. It’s a joy to watch from the sidelines, as they put teams to the sword.
Given the blow out score, and Bowral forfeiting the remaining 15 minutes of the game. A report on the game would not do the reserves a grand justice.
Outstanding contributors were Eamon Sullivan, who has continued on his rich vein of form, the new Centre Pairing of Venu Ah Sam who may I congratulate on his recent wedding, and Ethan Whittington who has absolutely dominated the opening 4 rounds to be close to the Clubs best in form Player. Also special mentions to James Crisp and of Course 300 Gamer Matty Searle.
The afternoon was set, after a well rested round for first grade.
After some heart breaking losses to open up the Rounds, 1st grade looked to make amends against Bowral.
What transpired was a game rarely seen in first grade. Full of running and attack, coupled with stinging defence. The 1st XV were ripping in with a lot of intent and implementing the training ground game plans to a tee. What ensued was also an avalanche of tries, and their would be no justice to report on such a scoreline.
James Berry is one of the feel good Stories of Camden, a local Lad who was teetering between grades up until a year and a half ago when AL Le Good put faith in him to shore up the 1st grade Scrum. What has transpired is one of the most improved players not just in the Club but in the competition.
What was seen as a shortage of props has been helped with Jimmy’s emergence at prop especially with the set pieces and has enabled First grade to solve part of the riddle on quality props.
Tim Windle also does not look out of touch in First Grade, and has really bought to light the healthy competition the Club now finds itself in. It ensures that everyone has to be on top of their game on a consistent basis, not only are their players knocking on the door from reserves, but the 1st XV have been all well in form.
The young halves pairing Rhys Millar and Tom Mulready has been in great form, highlighted by their understanding of one another’s game and it showed on the weekend.
The Club has had new structures and processes instilled at the beginning of the season, and it was always going to take time for them to get off the ground.
We seem to be warming up nicely to the business end of the round, and coming into the difficult games we find ourselves on the brink of hope, still controlling our own destiny.
Thanks once again to the Camden Faithful, your support has been second to none!
Its what sets Camden apart, its what sets Rugby apart and it’s what drives us to play for the Jersey!