The U13 & U11 Rugby Tour to Beijing saw 21 players lock horns against other international schools from throughout Asia as well as the Middle East.
The first day saw a nervous start for both teams as they began to develop structures and confidence in contact. 4 games of rugby in a day is a huge ask for anyone and in the 37 degree heat with high humidity it was an awesome effort from all of the players and both coaches to have both teams firing late on day one and starting to play their best rugby.
Day two saw both of the teams really hit their straps with the 11’s showing some great attacking flair and the 13’s dominating teams with their defence. In the final games of the tournament both sides found themselves in the 3rd v 4th playoff. The U 11’s showed some champagne attacking flair and some real grit to survive a late comeback and win by a try against a well organised Dulwich Shanghai team. The U13’s turned in an effort for the ages, despite a meagre 30% of possession the AISHK defended with discipline and determination and the 4 tries to 1 victory probably does not reflect how dominant of a performance they put on the park. Both teams securing a 3rd place finish is a pleasing result against some strong opposition.
Special mention to young guns Xavier Gyngell and Kingston Hoffman who played up to assist the U13’s who had played the majority of the tournament with no subs.
The All Star team nominations were hotly contested with many students putting their hands up for selection. However, in the end William Holt (U11’s) and Sebastian Gyngell (U13’s) emerged as worthy recipients of all star selection for their outstanding work on the field and sportsmanship.
Congratulations to coaches Price and Wnek on some impressive team performances across the two days and with such a young playing group there is already some excitement and anticipation ahead of the Beijing trip in 2020.
Andrew Wookey| HPE Teacher