Sasha's Russian Diary Week 7

Rhinos captain joined by Sash

Rhinos captain joined by Sash


On Wednesday 23 February morning, we went to watch Super League team Leeds Rhinos take part in training. They are usually train in their own rugby academy, which is located a couple miles from city center. In this academy trained teams from 14 to 21 years and the main team. All players are arrive at 8 am, eat Breakfast and the first training they begin at 9 am.

On that day they were divided into two groups, forwards and backs. First they rehearsed defence in a wrestling hall, and went to the quarter-field work running technique. After about half an hour they swapped groups. After the first workout the entire team gathered in a conference room on the analysis of their own past games and future rivals - the team Harlequins. Before the meeting began, we managed to chat a bit with the players - they were very approachable and friendly, without any stars ego.

We told them that we had come from Russia and now play in an amateur team Sharlston, they know our team and in which league it plays, and know all of our strongest players. We were in shock! If, for example, ask us in Russia, a professional football team, whether they know of any amateur club - I think not!

At a time when the meeting took place, all the players sat quietly and attentively listened to the coach. The coach showed them cutting video from their last game and told, in what moment it would be better to do. Then they pulled down the strengths and weaknesses of the team harlequins with whom they were supposed to play a few days. The coach emphasized that the defence of Harlequins very weak protection in the area of markers and asked to pay special attention to this issue.

After the meeting, all the players got into their cars and headed for the second workout on an artificial field, which is a ten minute drive from the academy, at a training base of the team from Leeds in rugby union. On the field, they practiced for an hour attack and defence. On arrival back to the academy players were waiting for a large number of reporters and journalists - all of them was interested to know how the team prepares for the upcoming game. And the players are happy to answer all their questions. So was our day with the team "Leeds Rhinos"!

Well, Friday we went to the Leeds vs Harlequins game. The Stadium struggled to capacity (14,000 seats), as this was the first game of the season at home stadium! From the first minutes of Leeds took advantage, and he brought in the fifth minute try, but then something strange happened with the players at Leeds and they have managed let 3 tries in 20 minutes, two of them - simply ridiculous. It felt as though Leeds simply underestimated the opponent, but at the end of the first time Leeds have managed to reduce the expense, effort raised his team's captain, Kevin Sinfield, and the teams went to the break 12-18 in favour of Harlequins! The second half started again with the benefits Leeds, and after a deep attack at a good speed last Leeds player Ryan Hall flew into the line with the ball! But then again, the players responded Harlequins three attempts, and brought the score to indecent - 16-36.

And the whole stadium roared and whistled as they were not happy with the play of their team, but all Leeds could do was score two tries. The final game score 26-36 - a victory Harlequins. Before the game visitors to the stadium could not think Harlequins would win, and with such a score! But still it was very interesting to watch the team and individual players for Leeds, with whom we have carried out a training day and did a lot of photos!

On Saturday we played our game with a team of Halifax Irish, Andrew was unable to enter the field, as was a small shoulder injury in training and decided not to risk it, and heal for the next game. And I went on the field in the first team in midfielder!

Game was pretty easy - we practically owned the whole game advantage for our attackers, and quarter was a lot of breakthroughs from the center of the field, with his half. Team Halifax Irish, looking like all the big tall, but in a lot of protection allowed the marriage. But we also played in the imperfect protection, since it gave his opponents three tries! I managed to take part in several attacks, which led to tries. It was the easiest game of all that we played. Game score 50-14, and, of course, can not fail to note once again of our center Garefa that submitted 4 tries!

After our game with a team of Halifax, we went to watch another team play Featherstone Rovers in the Cup Northern Rail, which was held at the home stadium of the team in the town of Featherstone. This time, Featherstone had a really strong contender - a team Widnes Vikings, which as we said earlier, is one of the main contenders for the change in the super league in 2012. The game began with the great advantage of the team Widnes.

Already in the third minute after the start of the game, they have brought the first attempt. The entire first half passed with the advantage of the guests, during which they have brought several more attempts, and the teams went to the break with the score 18-0 in favour of the guests.
At the beginning of the second half, Widnes again have brought a try, bringing the score to 22-0. In the middle of the second inning, lined, and in the last fifteen minutes before the end of the game, players team Featherstone brought courage. They have brought three unanswered tries, bringing the score to 22-16, and could score the winning try, but the scrum half didnít have the strength and luck to Record attempt!

And on Sunday, as I mentioned earlier, we went to see the Super Match - Wigan (England) - St George Illawara Dragons (Australia). At the game we came out early, so as to meet with Julia and sit in a restaurant meal before the game. We went to the stadium and barely had time to the beginning of the match and only managed to enter the stadium, as here on the first minutes of Wigan scoring the opening try and the whole stadium sang,

It was something - to hear how 24,000 people singing in one voice, and within two minutes, Paul Deacon makes bump the whole stadium on their feet, making the expense of 8-0 after a free kick from 40 meters! And this is where Australia had to be switched on full blast, and about ten minutes after the incredibly fast attack having dispersed its extreme and quarterstaff, they put two tries and the score is 10.8 in favour of the Australians. But Wigan is not broken, and the four-player after the break with his half at breakneck speed runs of all players in St George, and puts a try. Account is 14-10, but then the Australians, an incredibly quickly disbanded and their extreme player flies over the line 14-14.
And like everything was going to ensure that the team will take a break with the score tied, but Sam Tomkins was not agree with that. And with the siren on the break scored a drop-goal. Break - 15-14 in favour of Wigan (stadium singing)!

The second half took place in an incredibly tight and smooth combat, where more luck smiled at St Johns - they have brought to the realization effort, and late in the game scored a drop-goal. As Wigan tried, but in the second half to break through the protection of Australians they could not, even though the moments near the line was almost enough. Determined by the score 15-21 in favour of St. Johns Ilawara Dragons!

Play Rugby League and teach English!