It is a rare occurrence for a sportsman to be nominated Player of the Match based on one moment of excellence but, on this occasion, George Morgan Jones was rightly awarded the accolade due to one successful penalty kick – the last kick of the game – to win the County Plate competition 10-7.
Welbeck negated the effect of Ratcliffe’s strong running forwards for most of the match and attacked with purpose on their rare opportunities. As seems to have become the norm, Ratcliffe found themselves behind with 10 minutes to go but, on this occasion, it seemed that the opposition would hold out, as wave after wave of Ratcliffe pressure achieved little. Eventually though, the team found their way, putting Alex Bown over from short range. George converted the try, but a draw was no use to Ratcliffe as Welbeck were strangely still ahead due to scoring the first try. One final push saw the opponents stray offside, Harry Brooks had no hesitation in pointing to the posts and George ‘Houdini’ Morgan Jones stepped up. The rest, as they say, is history.
Great credit goes to the whole 22-man squad who, despite being well short of their best, had the drive and self-belief to keep going and simply find a way to win. Co-captains, Harry Brooks and Harry Heaney, certainly led by example in magnificent individual performances, but all players really deserve mention – even those who unfortunately did not get on the pitch but still supported the team until the end. Their pitch invasion on the final whistle was a sight to behold!
On Friday 23rd March the Boys’ and Girls’ first XI hockey teams travel to Bath to play in the Bath Hockey Festival. Both teams had a great weekend where they each played three competitive games. The boys began proceedings on Friday with a fine 6 – 1 win against Ryde and Upper Chime School. Goal scorers were Harry Heaney, David Hippisley-Cox, Jack Nightingale, Sebastian Cook, Alex Purcell and Reece Goodman. The girls earned a well-deserved one all draw against a very competitive Solihull team. Mia Atkinson was the goal scorer. On Saturday the girls played a triangular tournament where they lost 2 – 1 to Solihull, Olivia Carpenter scoring the goal. However, their best performance was a fine victory beating King Edward’s school 2 – 1, Olivia Carpenter again scoring both goals. The boys began Saturday with an impressive 3 – 2 victory over King Henry’s Coventry. David Hippisley-Cox, Reece Goodman and Alex Purcell were the goal scorers. However, in their last game they played a very strong Elizabeth College and were defeated for the first time over the weekend, losing 7 – 1.
All-in-all, it was great weekend for both teams with some great hockey played. A big thankyou to all the students and staff for making it such a great tour.
The Year 8 and Year 7 netball teams travelled to Condover Hall for their Spring Netball Tour. All students enjoyed playing netball as well as having fun at all the various activities which included high ropes, climbing, a silent disco, camp fires, laser maze and much more. The level of competition this year at the netball tournament was tough, with a number of netball clubs and strong school teams entering, however, the girls aquitted themselves well and played some excellent netball, with one of the Ratcliffe teams winning the Plate Competition. A great time was had by all, with lots of team bonding and excellent netball being played.
The U15’s girls Midlands county hockey finals were held at Ratcliffe on Sunday 15th April and saw eight county teams competing against one another. The Leicestershire team which included Aimee Cleminson (Year 10), Elise Atkinson (Year 9) and Bella Whalley (Year 9) had a fantastic day finishing in third place. The whole team played exceptionally well, winning three, drawing one and losing only one match. The standard of hockey from all the countries on the day was of a very good standard and the girls all did extremely well!
It was wonderful to congratulate so many talented individuals and celebrate so many sporting successes at the Sports Presentation Evening held at the end of the Spring term. Sam Ward, Great Britain and England hockey player was the guest of honour and I hope that those present found his speech both entertaining and inspirational. It was also great to see Sam Ward playing at the Commonwealth Games winning a bronze medal and being crowned England’s top goal scorer. Please may I thank you once again for your support of the evening and the PE department throughout the year.