Finals Day in Shanghai for Primary Rugby

School News March 23, 2019
Finals Day in Shanghai for Primary Rugby

On the first day of the Qing Ming holidays, the WAIS Primary Rugby U9 and U11 teams travelled to Shanghai for their final match of the season, the finals day at Dulwich College, Pudong!

With many of our pupils staying in boarding after having a delicious pizza dinner and movie on the Friday night, we set off early from school, with the children in high spirits and excited to take on the rival schools and clubs, which included the Shanghai Hairy Crabs, Harrow International School and Nord Anglia School.

On a glorious sunny day in Shanghai, the Under 9s, taken by Mr. Aydon, took part in a number of matches, with some terrific performances from R. Huang, S. Yan, and H. Liao. However unfortunately, the results did no go their way, and they ended up only with a solitary draw for their efforts, losing the other matches in their group. What was fantastic to see however, was many of the WAIS boys, including B. Ling and O. Yan volunteering themselves for other teams who were short of players, which really shows both a passion for the game and also great camaraderie, which is something the game of rugby really cultivates in children.

In the Under 11 tournament, there was some fast, free-flowing rugby against some tough opposition, with the boys taking on Dulwich College, Pudong “Red”, the Hairy Crabs, and Wellington College in the group stages.

In the first match against DCS Red (who turned out to be eventual champions), WAIS ran hard and scored some great tries through K. Martin (2) and J. Yu aka “Fish”, however their weak tackling was to be their let down as they conceded some soft tries, which led to them losing the first match.

Final Score: WAIS 3-5 DCS Red

Try Scorers: K. Martin (2), J. Yu 

In their second match against the Hairy Crabs, the boys knew they had what it took to come out on top, and were up for it from the start, smashing through rucks and supporting their team mates superbly. Tries from L. Wang, K. Martin (2), and captain X. Clarke, set the boys on course for their first victory of the day.

Final Score: WAIS 4-3 Shanghai Hairy Crabs

Try Scorers: L. Wang, K. Martin (2), X. Clarke

In the final match of the pool stages, WAIS took on Wellington College, a team they had beaten on multiple occasions previously. Following on from the momentum gained in the Hairy Crabs match, all the boys played some superb rugby, looking to pass the ball instead of going into contact, and when rucks did occur, Y. Wang and T. Cui were on hand to compete and win the ball back for their team mates! Six individual players got their names on the scoresheet, but what was most pleasing about the victory was that it was the first of the whole year, where the team had to keep making tackle after tackle on their own try line to stop the opposition scoring, which they did successfully, with Y. Wang and T. Liu in particular making some absolutely fantastic tackles to save the team. The boys had made it to the semi finals thanks to their two wins in the group stages!

Final Score: WAIS 6-0 Wellington College

Try Scorers: X. Clarke, L. Wang, Y. Wang, E. Li, J. Tao, J. Jing, T. Liu

In the semi finals, WAIS took on Nord Anglia International School (NAIS). Unfortunately, the occasion seemingly went to the boys’ heads and they didn’t play the free-flowing, expansive rugby they had played in the group stages, instead opting to give the ball to their big runners and hoping they would score by themselves, which in rugby, is seldom the case, as it is very much a team game. Some weak tackling to begin with led to two soft tries being conceded, and the WAIS boys unfortunately couldn’t come back from that early setback. 

Final Score: WAIS 0-3 NAIS Pudong

Despite a disappointing final result for the Under 11s, to reach the semi finals of a regional tournament like this is no small achievement, and all of the boys involved can look back on a fantastic term of rugby, with many of the Grade 5s now going on to Year 7, where they will be competing for spots on the Under 13 team in September, alongside older Year 8 boys too.

Before that however, the Under 11 Rugby and Netball (who won their event on the same day as the rugby boys!) teams will be travelling to Beijing at the end of May for a fantastic multi-sport tournament to cap off a tremendous year for sport at WAIS Primary!