Witham Rugby News

10 Nov 2014

2nd XV:

Witham 2nd XV 17

Oakham School  17

Tries: N. Cooper (2), Max Moore

Conversions: W. Chandler (1)

This was a real local derby with the lead changing hands several times during the afternoon as each side competed hard to gain the upper hand. It was left to the calm boot of Will Chandler to make the draw with the last kick.

The Witham scrummage carried on the impressive form it has shown all season and against a bigger pack, the Witham boys held their own ball and even stole a couple “against the head” to complete a good afternoon’s work. Ned Chatterton replacing Will Pepper at half time had a strong game in the front row as did Callum Wass, who fully justified his start by putting in a great stint in the scrum and mauling with purpose throughout the afternoon. At number eight Max Moore rampaged at the Oakham defence to good effect and was ably backed up by Toby Coulson, Eshan Mehta, Freddie Arlott, Max Shippey and an irrepressible Frankie Atkinson.

Great protection of the ball allowed Will Chandler time to make effective decisions going forward, and when the backs got the ball they ran directly with Isaac Barrow and Noah Cooper making good yardage when put away by intelligent passing from Harry Thompson. In the wide open spaces Rori Rodell, Archie Smith –Maxwell and Ben Mackintosh made good use of the ball and importantly, looked after it well.

Super subs were Freddie Dumbill, Alex Edwards, Ned Chatterton and Joey Robinson who all played really well and it is testament to their abilities that the team continued to play well despite multiple positional changes throughout the game.

Well done boys!

Colts A

Colts A at the Leicester Grammar School U11 tournament

The Colts A enjoyed an encouraging afternoon at Leicester Grammar School's nine-a-side tournament. Our opening match was against the hosts' B-team – the result could not have been more emphatic, with our boys scoring 14 tries in 15 minutes! Next up were the tournament's eventual winners, Stamford Junior, against whom we competed admirably in a defeat by four tries to one. Our final group match was against Loughborough's Fairfield Prep; this was another competitive contest, but this time Witham deservedly prevailed by three tries to one and therefore secured second place in the four-team group.

We then faced the other group's second-placed team, Ratcliffe College, in a battle for third overall in the tournament. Witham dominated the match in terms of both territory and possession but could not breach the opposition's determined defence. Sadly for Witham, as so often happens in matches of this nature, with two minutes left a Ratcliffe player ran almost the entire length of the pitch to score the decisive try. Nevertheless, our boys can feel very proud of finishing fourth out of the eight schools present.

Well done to the whole squad: Archie Bingham (c), Rory Pepper, Oliver Allport, Felix Starkey, Robert Tombs, Oliver Rymer, Max St John, Freddie Sumner, Harry Gillett, Will Robertson, Ewan Rodell.

Group matches

Leicester Grammar B    Won 14-0

Stamford Junior             Lost  4-1

Fairfield Prep                  Won 3-1


Third-place play-off

Ratcliffe College            Lost 1-0


(Try = 1 point)


Colts B:

Witham Hall  28

Highfields U11A   40

The Colts B were quite sluggish from the start which resulted in them being caught off guard by a rather quick boy from Highfields who weaved his way through our defence to score.  Unfortunately, apart from the occasional decisive run made by either Harry Jones or Fin Cordial, the pattern of the whole game was much the same as the start. 

Witham rucked the opposition off the ball very effectively at stages during the game but couldn’t recycle the ball often enough to turn it into a score.  Witham were beaten by a more determined

Colts C:

Witham Hall  0

St Hugh’s  40

The Colts C faced tough opposition - the team from St Hugh’s was well organised and skilful at passing the ball to players in space.  Witham tried their best to tackle and defend but it was too difficult resulting in St Hugh’s running in several tries. 

A half time talk to encourage the boys to be more determined going forward with the ball seemed to help because, although not scoring, they did put some better phases of rugby together which meant they gave the opposition a good match.

It was fabulous to see James Weldon play his game of rugby for Witham Hall – he did very well on the wing.

A good effort boys, well done.


U9A to Stamford Festival:


Witham Hall 0-20 Stamford Junior School

Witham Hall 0-10 Wellingborough

Witham Hall 20-0 Bedford Prep

Witham Hall 0-10 Bedford Modern


The U9A team fought valiantly and learnt a lot of lessons at the annual Stamford Junior School Rugby Tournament. Our first opponents Stamford Junior School were a well organised team that moved the ball quickly into the wide channels. This made it very difficult for Witham to defend and we soon learnt the importance of going up together quickly in a flat line to stop Stamford’s momentum. Stamford were worthy winners 20-0. In our second match we played Wellingborough and the boys were starting to play some really good rugby. The imperious William Chatterton worked tirelessly at the breakdown to win Witham quick ball which enabled the likes of Charlie Rymer and Louis Batty to make some excellent runs from deep. However, Wellingborough were well organised defensively and caught Witham out on the break a couple of times to win 10-0. Although a little disheartened from their first two results, the boys kept their heads held up high and with sheer grit and determination played an excellent match against Bedford Prep. Joshua Clarke was carrying the ball well in two hands, ensuring that he got over the gain line time and time again by pumping his legs hard. Josh was ably supported by Hugo Shippey who put in a sterling performance, using his quick feet to avoid defenders and looking to offload the ball at the right times. Witham ran in four tries and won 20-0. In our final match of the tournament we played the overall winners Bedford Modern. On the up and improving with each game played, the boys could not have played any better. Every single U9A player gave it their all for the Witham cause and in a closely fought contest narrowly lost 10-0. It was incredibly pleasing to see the boys listen closely to instructions and learn some valuable lessons against tough opposition during the course of the morning. A big thank you must go to all the parents who came to support!