Selby Senior Colts secured their league victory with the last match of the campaign against Mansfield who were the only other title contenders. The match report for this last campaign clash finished as follows…
“Selby’s pack had been massively dominant, both going forward and in their defensive hits. This had given opportunity after opportunity to the backs to run riot, and they’d done exactly that.”
And this really was the story of the whole season, particularly when they were firing on all cylinders as they did against Mansfield. Dominant ball-keeping and ball-winning from the forwards, and exciting pace and precision from the backs, linked by terrific half-back play.
No team can expect to be at the top of their game for a whole season, but when things weren’t perfect, the Colts were gritty and determined. Early season wins against Doncaster 2 and Mansfield were hard-fought. The team, almost always half U18s and half U17s, were getting to know and trust each other. The work that went in from the players and ultra-dedicated coaching staff on cold and dark Thursday evenings was reaping early rewards.
The early wins built confidence. The only pre-Christmas blemish came in the first round of the cup against Old Rishworthians, but this meant a run in the Plate became the prize worth fighting for, in parallel with the league.
Throughout the season, many of the U17 players got chance to step up and play for the Seniors, and this experience can only be positive as the club looks forward to next season.
Other big league wins followed, including a tough trip to Wath where the conditions weren’t at all conducive to great rugby. In fact, the only league loss came late in the season away to Barnsley who were very strong on the day against a slightly depleted Selby team.
In the cup, the first plate match was won by just 1 point against Roundhegians, and the next match by only 2 scores against Middlesbrough. Into the new year, and Bradford Salem were the semi-final opponents. An incredibly tense 15-12 victory took the Swans through to a deserved place in the final against Scunthorpe.
If Selby can harness all the positives they’ve demonstrated through the season, they’ll be a hard act to beat. Great leadership from Green and his fellow U18s has been complemented brilliantly by some exciting U17s talent who have really stepped up.
Is a League and Cup double too much to hope for? Let’s hope not. Good luck lads
Updated 13:59 - 25 Mar 2019 by Karen Ratcliffe