Mixed emotions for England rugby
England’s rugby league and union teams suffered different fates but put in strong, brave performances.
The rugby union team went down to South Africa 36-27 but the league side overcame the Exiles 18-10 to avenge a loss from last years game.
The union boys had a torrid start to their second test against the Springboks.
Within the first seven minutes South Africa had scored two tries and were stretching a lead to what was looking to become very embarrassing for England.
But all credit to them, they dug in, fought hard and scored three tries of their own to give South Africa a big scare in the last 10 minutes.
For some reason South Africa’s conversion kicking from Morne Steyn was absolutely woeful, and the win would have been much more convincing had he had taken all of his opportunities.
But that’s what sports like rugby is all about – taking advantage of the other teams mistakes and punishing them as best you can.
Although the England team have lost the series against South Africa, there is still pride to play for in Port Elizabeth on the 23rd.
Before that they have a warm-up game against the Barbarians North, which they should be able to take a win from, but hopefully it’ll give them a chance to try out some new defensive tactics to keep the brutes of the South African forwards at bay.
England didn’t put in a bad performance, it was just sloppy and we were often caught napping or inexperience got a hold of our players.
If England play the same way again in the next test, then they can restore some pride and faith in Northern hemisphere rugby if they get a win, and let’s hope they do.
The union lads ran out winners against the foreign exiles.
In a special game where the England rugby league side plays an accumulated team of foreign players in the English league, the England team got revenge for their loss in the previous year.
After adopting a couple of the Exiled players from last year into the England team, tensions were running high and the game wasn’t played in the best of spirits, especially as there was a lot of frustration following numerous handling errors.
There’s only one more match to play in this mini-series, and Exiles will want to correct their mistakes and draw the series, whereas England will be looking to completely outplay them again to get a sweeter revenge for last year.