29 October 2017 / Team News

Barcelona Rugby Festival 2017

Ruthin Vets travelled away to Barcelona on their “You’ve got Messy we’ve got Mossy tour”.

After a day’s travelling and rehydrating the squad arrived at the Barcelona Rugby Festival.  Captained by a very trim Pat Keefe, who’d flown in from Quatar they came up against a strong French side “Stade de Reims Rugby” and won the game 7 – 0 with Jon “the claw” Mills crossing for the try and converted by the ever elusive Tony Crumble.  The next opponents were RC Walferdange from Luxembourg who didn’t offer much except for their scrummaging taking three against the head. Ruthin dominated the game up front with some strong carrying from Rhys Hilditch, Paul Threlfalopodopolus and Latham Parry.  This created good quick ball for the backs and both Matthew Davies and Joe Palmer went over for tries.  Rhuthun’s last Pool game was against another strong French side “AAS Toulon”.  With the game 0 – 0 at half time a strong, inspirational team talk from RP Jones and Titw Thomas paved the way to a hard fought win, Matthew Akroyd Davies was a man possessed all 2nd half with Rhys Hilditch finally crashing over for a great score five minutes before the final whistle.  

So Rhuthun made it to the final but the hard fixture list and 28 degree heat had taken it’s toll – Latham Parry (broken arm), Gethin Hughes (twisted knee), Jon Rimmington Evans (Groin strain), Paul Threlfalopodopolus (back injury) and John Tudor (dehydration) Andy Edwards (stinger).  Final - Rhuthun V’s Tunisia National Vets side (Association des Anciens Internationaux de Rugby). 

In front of a capacity crowd in the heart of Catalonia the game started after both National Anthems had been passionately sung.  Rhuthun had most of the possession 1st half but couldn’t break the strong Tunisian defence.  With fatigue setting in and only two subs on the bench compared to Tunisia’s fourteen Rhuthun started to run out of steam early in the 2nd half. Some sloppy handling from the North Walians led to an attempted back heel flick by Lee Flatley Jones being intercepted by the Tunisian centre who ran in for a try under the posts.  After that the Welsh heads dropped and Tunisia finished the game with two more tries in the dying minutes.  It was a huge achievement to reach the final and the Tuniasians have invited Rhuthun to take part in their tournament in 2018.  

The club would like to thank the tour sponsors H&C Howatson, GJ Teeson, Apollo Products and the P&A Group for their support.  

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