Thankfully the hazy days are but a distant memory (for now) and the postponed TRC Clifford Chance Touch Tournament was able to go ahead without disruption on Sunday 28th February.
MCM entered 5 teams and represented in U10, U12, U14, U16 and U18 categories. A number of U13 girls from the College also represented club sides at the tournament and proudly demonstrated their commitment to our major sport alongside their teammates from TRC.
The morning play saw some incredible performances from our budding U10 and U12 touch teams. Miss Jardine-Paterson clearly primed her speed demons perfectly for the day. The team sailed through their division to earn a place in the final against SCC. The game was tense and went down to a ‘sudden death’ drop-off, whereby one player from each team must leave the field every minute until a winning try is scored. The exhausted teams reduced numbers to 2-a-piece and SCC was unable to prevent Anya Dalglish from bringing home the glory for MCM.
The U12 team, coached by Mr Watson, had a shaky start to the day but managed to gain both confidence and momentum as the morning progressed. A couple of early draws, followed by convincing wins, secured a well-deserved place in the final and a chance to do ‘the double’ in the junior age categories. The opposition was to be the TRC Lions team; it was clear from the outset that the hosts would not give over the gold easily. As a result, this thrilling final also progressed to a drop-off stage. Sophia Webber demonstrated an impressive level of stamina to repeatedly shut down the attacking pride but it was Millie Gummer who scored the winning touch down.
Following the excitement of the U10 and U12 competitions, the afternoon was dedicated to the senior age groups.
Mr Riley coached our formidably fit U14 team, who made it through a tough group to reach the 5th/6th play-off. Unfortunately, they missed out to an experienced TRC team, during yet another nail biting drop-off. It was a difficult day for our U16 and U18 teams too, who both suffered significant depletion of some integral players. Nevertheless, Miss Nixon’s fearless U16 team displayed admirable tenacity and perseverance as they competed amongst teams from the older age group. The U18s have enjoyed huge success this season, however, they struggled to find form in time to compete for the silverware at the Clifford Chance. They won their last game with flair to score three tries unanswered and finished 5th overall.
With every tournament, our senior teams continue to take strides forward in solidifying playing styles and strategies. There is no doubt that the MCM touch girls are resilient and motivated, characteristics that are essential for progress and, unsurprisingly, synonymous with long-term success.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Miss Jardine-Paterson, Mr Watson, Mr Riley, Miss Nixon and all of the beaks involved in the coaching and development of girls’ touch at the College for their hard work, dedication and unwavering encouragement. The vast number of triumphs at all age groups is proof that the programme is both robust and rewarding. The girls are engaged, extremely active and certainly becoming a force to be reckoned with on the touch field.
Miss A Niven
Head of Senior Girls’ Games