25 Jan 2009 – YCAC 1sts vs Kurumi | YCAC Gents vs Koyama

YCAC 1sts 31, Kurumi 19 (HT 19-5)
Tries:
Grant Thompson, Eps Tuibenau, Willie Lapthorn (2), Kenji Yoshioka
Cons: Ben Duncan (3)

YCAC 35, Koyama 26 (HT14-7)
Tries:
Will Whetstone (2), Kenji (2), Terry Beuchner
Cons: Matt Dimond (5)

YCAC 1sts
Are there any lengths that YCAC’s Holy Trinity of Ryan, Lewis, and Jamieson will not go to in order to ensure success for the club they love so much?

Let’s look at the evidence: Fraser “Buffalo Butt” Jamieson battles on match after match and season after season for YCAC, refusing to retire despite a catalogue of injuries which would have seen him shot years ago if he were a racehorse. Simon “El Presidente” Ryan, currently in his 21st consecutive season for the club, is constantly going beyond the call of duty for his troops, a classic example being the hiring of an Estonian exotic dancer to limber the team up before a Crusaders fixture last season. (Tristan “Own Goal” Fahy still dreams of her.) And now, before this season’s Kurumi fixture, Steve “The Vicar” Lewis took the unprecedented step of organizing a chance for YCAC’s greatest prop (Photo A) to have a motivational session with sumo’s greatest wrestler (Photo B).

Yes, that’s right, Vicar organized for Erich “The Freezer” Friess to go to the sumo on the Friday before the match to first watch Asashoryu in action and then meet the great man in his locker room after his bout and have dinner with him later that night. For proof that this actually happened, click on the following link: http://www.sponichi.co.jp/sports/special/2009sumouhatsu/KFullNormal20090124130_p.html
The main part of the picture is obviously Asashoryu with some of his other fans, but if you check in the left-hand corner we can catch a glimpse of Freezer’s beer gut and see his arm extending to take a picture (of himself strangely enough).

Fired up after his brush with greatness Freezer went on to lead the YCAC forwards to an inspired display against Kurumi. Following right behind was Sias “Potheater” Potgieter who was looking in remarkably good shape considering he has just got back from two and a half weeks in South Africa. Considering that the Potheater dines each night on portions of braii larger than several of the Kurumi backline whenever he is back in the homeland it is amazing that he was clocking in on Sunday at his optimum fighting weight of 131 kgs.

However, even with a focused performance from the YCAC big boys, this match was far from a walkover. In fact, it was an intriguing battle of styles with Kurumi trying to spin the ball wide at every opportunity and YCAC trying everything they could to keep it tight. It is rare to have both teams so diametrically opposed in the type of rugby they wanted to play and this made it a very enjoyable game to play in. In the end, YCAC were able to impose just enough order on the game to see us come away with the win but Kurumi deserve full credit for their tenacious defence and for having the courage to keep trying things for the full length of the match.

Joe

YCAC Gents
The wild men of Tottori made their annual 1,500 kilometre pilgrimage to YCAC on Saturday/Sunday and they don’t come wilder than their inspirational President/Captain/Coach Driver, Neil Smith. Before kick-off, the Tottori Wild Men made it known that they were fielding an ex-international in their ranks. Of course, we all thought that Neil Smith had been blagging them that he had once played an international for the All Blacks, but it transpired that Koyama had a 50 year old ex-Japan international second row playing for them in the scrum.

Injuries had deprived YCAC Gents of many of their traditional heroes: Simon Ryan (hammy), Scott Sizemore (calf) and Fraser Jamieson (thumb print). Desperate times called for desperate measures and so YCAC asked All France for reinforcement. Three of the beret-wearing onion-sellers joined the YCAC scrum. With three Frenchmen in our ranks, the inevitable happened and YCAC’s scrum retreated for the first time in living memory. The forward platform gave Koyama a good base to attack and with the 54 year old Neil Smith leading the charge, it was the YCAC backs who ensured that we went into the half-time break with a slender 14-7 lead.

The inspirational Neil Smith is a reformed character these days: the back-chat borders upon politeness and the foul play was limited to banging our scrum half’s head into the plastic pitch (but these days Neil does it gently and no serious harm was done). Unfortunately, those 54 year old ankles are not used to playing on plastic with the result that Neil was forced to depart at half time. Inevitably, Koyama became dispirited at the loss of their Eminence Gris and the first 15 minutes of the second half saw YCAC dominate and score three quick tries. However, the old War Horse couldn’t simply watch from the side lines and so chopped off the offending ankle and hopped back onto the pitch for the last 5 minutes. The transformation was amazing and Koyama scored three tries in a rousing last 5 minutes.

Hats off to Matt Dimond who scored five out of five conversions to ensure that YCAC finished the match victorious. Taking his hat off is something that Fraser won’t be doing for quite some time: at least not until that thumb print has faded…

Steve

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