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LSRG Nieuws

Match Report by the Man of Letters

Gentlemen,


It has been asked of me to come through for the LSRG once again, and per usual I am happy
to oblige. Having an away game in my current city of residence helps, but as many of you
know I try to stay as connected as I can, because this club and everyone who is a part of it is
still important to me. The committee has graciously postulated that it is enough for me to
write this week’s match report.
Facing HRC is always a big challenge. You heard King Kong say it after the game: we
haven’t had a win on their grounds in ages. This time had us taking on some familiar faces,
with the grins of Prins, Big Pete and Moose greeting us from the other side (still wearing the
right socks though).
The first half was a fine display of letting the opponent blow off some steam, before being
absolutely ruthless in counterattack. The big boys from HRC were determined to make it a
physical fight, which is where teams like them usually get their advantage over students.
However, our pack held them at bay and each time we reclaimed possession and could
unleash our fine hands and impressive footwork, it caused severe problems for them, though
not merely as much damage as I would have liked to see, despite our early try which set us up
for the remainder of the match. If you can easily spot where your advantage lies, why not
utilize that more often? For the majority of the first half, it was no real cause for concern, but
as half time came closer, I felt more and more uneasy about it.
Being the ridiculously important man that I am, I climbed the “press” stands during the
halfway break, to have an elevated look at what exactly was happening, and what I saw
immediately after half time was not especially pleasing.
In the first half of the second half, there was a period when the dreaded ‘LSRG nap’ made its
annoying appearance. Of course it also had to do with HRC fielding some players who have,
shall we say, considerable experience with a higher level of rugby, but at the very least an
equal blame is to be put on us. I’m not saying you guys fucked up or anything, but you
allowed HRC to dream of a result when that should (and could) have been out of the question
already. Kill a match as soon as you can, or it will cause you problems, some perhaps in the
very near future. The fact that you snapped out of it in the last twenty minutes, helped by
superior fitness, is a good sign, but if it can be avoided altogether, it will make playing (and
watching) the match that much easier.
After the match, Iain highlighted some personal performances, but most of all praised the
team performance, which I am more than content to agree with. Nonetheless, a couple of you
stood out for me. First up is Connor, who I thought was the embodiment of realising what was
necessary to pull this over the line, a defining characteristic for a captain. Ripping balls,
leading plays and just being a general nuisance to anyone not in the sky-blue/maroon, I
thought you were outstanding. Also worth mentioning: the link-up plays by King Kong,
Jonkers and Maupie. The 8-9- 10 chain is not called the hinge of a team for nothing, especially
coming out of scrums, and you called (and executed) the shots like troopers. Final shout-out
goes to Goldilocks on fullback. You were immense, man! I counted at least three try-saving
tackles. That alone would have been enough for a solid game, but you managed to step it up
in attack as well.

But like I said, it was the team performance above all that was cracking (that’s a good thing, if
your English is lacking in that department). Everybody was turned on and when you
threatened to let it slip, you pulled yourselves back from that, which shows a tremendous
mental strength. The pack was hard as nails against a heaver opponent, and the backs showed
how nimble and deadly they can be. Now go do it more often, is all I can mewl about that.
I am especially impressed with your ability to remain active and not wait out situations that
could benefit you. This is most notably seen during tackles. On numerous occasions, I was
already halfway expressing my agony of you guys tackling too high, only to be silenced by a
support runner ripping the ball. I’m not always sure it’s fully your intention, but it’s effective
as hell!
Final score according to the ref was 14-38, which I can’t help but feel is robbing HRC of a
try, but I have it on good authority they have their best man working on it. Still, a solid win
against an experience bunch of bastards, you can be proud. Next week will be tougher in
terms of open play, against our student counterparts from Rotterdam. They’re in a similar
position and of similar ability, so this Sunday will determine which of the student clubs will
hang on in a potential title race. Exciting stuff!
Once again, the LSRG proved to be unbeatable during the third half, despite it being HRC’s
lustrum. If the current LSRG made us all proud with their performance on the pitch, the old
geezers (and I say that with respect) did so with their singing and boasting. The mingling of
young and old, The Hague and Leiden, student and civilian, was a fine example of ‘het
gevoeltje’ that we spread everywhere we go. Our recently fallen comrade Koelie would have
been proud.
As a native ‘Hagenaar’ myself, I can’t deny having a cringe when you offered, though
adequately coloured, a heron (reiger) to HRC, when the symbol of The Hague is a stork
(ooievaar). Then I remembered Mika and I once presented Njord with a goose instead of a
swan, so I got over it quickly. It’s the thought that counts anyway. The commitment both on
and off the field is what makes us great, and it’s wonderful to see everyone getting that and
acting accordingly.


Cheers,

Pava

 

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