Beverley RUFC: November Review 2022

What a difference a month makes!

Given the frustrations in our performances in October, November brought with it some pleasing results. Not only did we win three-out-of-three in the last month, but the nature of these performances were much improved.

Despite a see-saw first half, against Roundhegians away, in which defence wasn’t high on the agenda for either side, we came out a much more disciplined and committed outfit in the second half. Despite Roundhegians not winning a game all season, they can still score points, so this was a potential banana skin for us.

Entertaining West Leeds at home was also another try-fest. Despite a low scoring first-half, which we led 13-5, the second half resulted in a flood of tries, that ended 42-29 in our favour. It was certainly one for the neutrals, but not for mine and Steve Girking’s blood pressure!

The game wasn’t helped by a couple of injuries and the sending off of one of our boys for two yellow card offences. But, credit to the lads, they stuck at it a man light and got a win and five points, which lifted us up to 5th in the table.

A hard-fought 39-19 win against much-fancied and heavily recruited, Bradford Salem was up next and was, without doubt, the most pleasing win of the season. We always have a tough game against them and to do so with two of our lads going off with badly broken collarbones and another with a concussion, we didn’t have it easy at all.

For me and my assistant, Steve Girking, these three results have given us renewed optimism that we can compete and challenge at the top of this league. More pleasing is that we’ve done it tough – with injuries and unavailabilities. The lads are training well and getting their rewards. The commitment, determination and team spirit is there to see. It shows how far we’ve come from last season, as a year ago we would probably have lost two of the three games.

To score 138 points in three games is no easy feat, and whilst I’m happy with our attack, although it could still be better, we obviously do need to improve our defence. That, I’m under no illusions to, and we will address that.

Whilst our backs get many of the plaudits, and rightfully so, I’m incredibly proud of how our forwards are performing at the minute. They are making their mark on the game – in set-piece and around the park – and improving week-in-week-out by playing as a unit. Long may that continue!

As well as three wins on the bounce for the 1st team, the 2nd team, ably led by Phil DuBoulay and Andrew Franklin, also recorded three wins on the bounce in the last month!

Difficult away games at Grimsby and BP, in which the latter was a very big upset and sent shockwaves through the Merit Leagues and led to a little bit of ‘egg on face’ following BP’s social media claims in the lead-up to the game, were followed by a home game against Withernsea.

Those impressive victories have not gone unnoticed, and there were a couple of phone calls in the last few days from the RFU to try and see if Phil and Andrew would be interested in the England job. Thankfully for me, and Beverley RUFC, they have agreed to stay loyal to the Beavers and carry on with their ‘project’.

Zoe Westlake