As the world cup finally was being held later today the match was to be played at midday, as opposed to 2pm which is when the rest of the matches shall take place.
Alas, first the pitch needed to be painted, so at 9am, Jonas had finally made it over to Tom’s, along with a lad, James, who had made it all the way down from CR to play for us today! What a ledge!! Off they went to Lamphun.
They arrived at 9:45am. Dtun, was already there waiting to help start the huge effort of painting the pitch!! After they’d all piled out of the car, Coach Tom had realised he hadn’t the storage key, where the fishing line is kept, so today, the pitch would be painted by eye!! The notion that straight lines were important became are more of a conceptual guideline! They got the pitch sorted out with in an hour, record timing! albeit, a few wobbles. (It turns out, it wasn’t just Jonas that felt like being inspired by Picasso today).
After 11am the players from both teams started piling in. Jonas, Dtun, James and Tom already looked as thought they’d played a gruelling match with beads of sweat dripping from their glistening adonis bodies . . .
Before long everyone was down and accounted for, including a few new comer. Greg, a centre from Ireland whom we’d recruited a week prior at Sheryle’s and Sanny who had started playing for us the weekend prior. LRC were hoping on a few more payers, Nick and Sam, however they didn’t show. So we had 13 men, all ready to play and compete in the Lanna Lions first ever ’15’s’ match!
The players were given their orders, got kitted up before going for a light warm up in was was fast becoming a scorching day in the midday sun!
Lanna Rugby Club Vs Chiang Mai All Stars
‘Dark Lord’ Iain (Prop), Dave (Hooker), Sanny (Prop), Tom ‘Stubs’ (2nd Row) Simon (2nd Row), Opart (No. 8), Mikey (Scrum Half), Jonas ‘Mad Dog’ (Fly Half, Captain), James (Inside Centre, Greg (Outside), Oli (Wing), Stanton (Wing), Dtun (Fullback)
Just before the match got underway, the referee spoke with both sides, made sure everyone knew the crack with Yellow cards and red cards before kick off, high tackles,, the like.
The Lions took to the freshly, wobbly painted pitch, gather round Jonas, one of the’ ‘Originals who was acting captain today as it will be his last game for some time due to his move to Spain, so it seemed fitting for him to lead the line.
After a fighting, uplifting speech from El Capitan, the Lions followed Dave in the 1,2,3, LIONS, before preparing for what would soon become the most bizarre matches in anyone’s history.
Lanna Rugby Club quickly set to receive the kick.
“PHWEEEEEEE!!!!” And they were off. The All Stars kicked the ball, sailing through the clear blue sky, finally a Lion, Dave, caught the ball, and doing what the Lions do best, ran the ball straight in to contact. Opart and Ian were with him, going over. Mikey got to the break down and wasted no time in popping the ball up to Sanny who again ran into the opposition like a steam train. Tom and Simon went over, Opart bridging. The All Stars lining up preparing to take whatever the Lions threw at them. Mikey again with the ball, passed it to Jonas who went for a run, as he hit contact, he got the ball our to James who in turn went for a run, smashing through a couple of players with his speed and power. Finally tackled, Greg was there in support, as was Dave, Mikey again on the ball. Oli was on the wing, Mikey quickly passed Oli the ball. He went on a darting run. Lions are into the All Stars 22. Oli gets tackled but where the support? Damn! The All Stars turnover ball, their turn to go on the assault.
Down the hands it went, Lions constantly taking them down one by one. Greag flew in and smashed the first player, then James with a crunching tackle. Mikey came flying in for the third tackle! SMASH! They knocked on, great work, Lions Scrum. Mikey slowly getting up from the huge hit, dusted himself off, first scruim of the day, soon to be followed by plenty more. Dave leading the scrum at hooker, crouch, touch . . . BOOM! Lanna Lions forced the All Stars off the ball, Mikey picked up and shipped the ball quickly to Jonas who went on a cheeky run, passed the ball to James. He was off, round one then two then tackle! Great run, alas no support in toe, the All Stars managed to turn the ball over in the ruck. The ball flew down the line. Dtun, our sturdly fullback, found his way over and put in an excellent tackle, taking the player right out of the game. However, it was too little too late, the player off loaded and ran to score the first try of the match! 0 – 5 to the All Stars.
James Kicked a nice high ball to the right. Mikey and Stanton were straight under it! Yet again though, the All Stars quickly put a second try past us. 0 – 10 Allstars.
Due to the day being so hot, we broke for water after 10 mins, everyone guzzling it down, proper parched! Oh, we were playing 20 min halves too due to the ferocity of the sun, which all the players were pretty happy with to say the least!
Back at it, Lions kicked once more. A big white lad on their team came steaming down, he got to Oli and gave a hugely illegal hand off, smashing him in the face. Penalty to Lions. Mikey took the penalty and passed it to Big Iain who steamrolled into the opposition. The Dark Lord went to ground, Simon, Sanny and Dave rucking over. The ball came out to Tom who ran hard at the All Stars, ruck again. This happened a few times, going through to James and Greg, making the hard Yards. Stanton and Opart in Support. We were in our 22. A scrum formed. Mikey got the ball to Jonas who went on another darting run, James and Opart went over in support. Mikey got the ball out to Tom who thought there was some space down the left wing, instead he was tackled right into touch. LRC set for a 4 man lineout, All Stars throw in. They won the ball, and even with the Lions giving a brilliant defence, taking each man down, the All Stars had an overlap and managed to squeeze a man down the left flank, allowing them to score one more try just before halftime. 0 -15 All Stars.
Luckily for the All Stars it was their turn to receive, as they surely haven’t seen enough of the ball already today . . . Mikey and Stanton were under it straight away again! The Lions pushed the All Stars so much that we forced a knock on. Scrum down Lions Ball. For around 7 Minutes we managed to hold them in their own half with Mikey feeding the ball out to Opart, James, Greg and Stanton and Oli who’d all made some blistering runs with the rest contributing to support. Sanny went on a storming run into the All Stars defensive line to the left, I’m not sure how they managed it but the All Stars turned over the ball. As we were deep into their 22 they kicked for touch . . . the ball bounced just on the cusp of touch where Dtun retrieved it. The tables had turned. Dtun looked around and went on the attack, taking the ball for a run down the centre of the pitch. He got past two players with his cat like agility before he was taken down as the Lions scrambled to get back in support. For a short period after, we managed to retain possession until the All Stars forced a knock on. The referee played advantage in what time the All Stars managed to score another try. 0 -20 All Stars. 10 min water break. Time to regroup.
Morale was low, Mad Dog Jonas put in a big speech, the Lions perked up and were ready to show the All Stars we are down but not out!
And off we went for the last quarter. Greg had the ball and went to stretch his legs making 10m, off loaded to Jonas as he was taken down. Mad Dog revved up and went for a huge run, driving with 2 All Stars attached. Simon, Opart and Dave went over, mikey got the ball and popped it up to Stanton who decided it was time to have a bit of a run. After going through the Lions hands a few times, the ball found itself in Tom’s hands. It was time for another jaunty run. He made some good yards until two of the All Stars slowed him down until a third, a forang on their team came in hard for a solid tackle, a ruck formed and the ball got out to the Lions backs . . . “PHWEEEEEEE!!!! BREAK IT UP! BREAK IT UP!”
. . . So let’s back up a bit. There was a Danish lad who’d come down to play for the Lanna Lions today, however before the match got underway he chose to play for the All Stars after an altercation with Tom (Coach). His emotions were apparently all over the place and didn’t understand what the word respect meant. All through out the match, he had been eyeing up Tom to take down. So, in the final 10 minutes of the match, he saw Tom going for a run and put in a crunching tackle, fair play, alas, it didn’t stop there. This roided up gym rat knelt over Tom, pinned him down after the ball had left the ruck, and began to punch him in the face . . . Good Job The Dark Lord had been watching!!! Iain saw the issue, came over, headlocked this crazy Danish roid boy, threw him to the ground and then gave him the same treatment he’d just given Tom. . .
Whilst Tom looked unphased by this jacked up lads attempt at hurting him, the roid head was sent off , and Iain no matter how galant, was sin binned. As he left the pitch the words “I’ll stab you you cunt” in a Welsh accent echoed out across the pitch.
Both teams were one man down. 12 Vs 12. The Lions won the scrum and went at it again. After various turnouvers and drop balls the All Stars regained possession and kicked for touch. The Lions had been forced right down into their 5. If this lineout was to go as the rest, the Lions were not going to win it. Funnily enough, that was the case, the All Stars won the line out, but only to get an onslaught of Lions charging at them, taking each player out. Jonas went in and gave the All Stars player a massive blow, knocking the ball on in the process. Scrum down Lions ball. The massive Lanna pack won the scrum, Mikey got the ball to Jonas, then to James. He went on a stormer, made about 15/20m. One problem, everyone was gassed, he had no support, the All Stars took the ball, passed it down the line and scored on the wing! 0 – 25 All Stars.
Iain was signaled to come back on to the pitch, just in time for one last phase before the whistle was blown for full time!
As the title suggests, we may have lost the match (Battle), but when it came to the on field physicality (war), the Lions ruled supreme, we were just outfoxed by cardio.
The Lions formed a tunnel and clapped the All Stars and the Referee, Alex BB, before everyone quickly jetted off to watch England lose to South Africa!
Final Score line: LRC 0 – 25 CAS
TRIES: 0 CONVERSIONS: N/A
Man of the Match: Dtun the Destroyer!
He played an excellent game, first time as Fullback, he got to grips with covering the back incase any players broke the line, as well as learning how to recover the ball when under a pressured situation.
Before the match there was a big crash in Lamphun, it turns out Sam, a new recruit for the Lanna Lions, was on his way. Almost at the grounds when he had a collision, breaking his leg in the process. Everyone at Lanna Rugby Club hope you recover quickly without any complications.