RN Sharks at Wild Boar 7's
The Royal Navy Sharks 7s season commenced with a trip to a cold, wet and blustery Eversley Cross in Hampshire for the Wild Boar 7s on Sunday, 3rd June. The tournament, as always, played host to a number of strong 7s teams, including a number of invitation teams who play on the National 7s circuit, including the White Heart Marauders and Samurai.
With 11 teams entered in the competition, the Navy Sharks were drawn in Group B along with invitational teams, the Castaways and Camberley RFC. The competition started at 10am and it was not long before the young Sharks had their first taste of 7s against a very experienced Castaways side.
This was a real baptism of fire for the newly formed Sharks who quickly found themselves 14-0 down. However, a fantastic individual effort by the Sharks' skipper AET (John) Humphrey (NAS Yeovilton) saw him out-step a Castaways player and sprint the length on the pitch to score an unconverted try: 14-5 HT.
The second half was again hard work for the Sharks who conceded another two tries and a conversation giving a 26-5 win to the Castaways.
There was a long gap before the Sharks' next game against Camberley RFC. This game would see the Sharks without skipper Humphrey who was sidelined with a hamstring injury.
This was another intense game as Camberley provided evidence of good teamwork that comes from playing regularly together. The young Sharks continued to press at every opportunity but eventually lost their final pool game 19-0.
This would mean that the Navy Sharks would go forward to the bowl competition. However, due to reduced squad and an increasing number of injuries, the coaching decided to withdraw from the competition and instead look forward to the next tournament.
The Wild Boar 7s was a very good learning platform for a newly formed and young Royal Navy Sharks side; there were a lot of positives and knowledge gained. This was also a learning experience for a new Sharks TSG of Lt (Sam) Cuff RN and Capt (Scott) Ashley RM who are being mentored by WO1 (Billy) May.
The RN Sharks now move to the West Country 7s at Keynsham RFC on Saturday 16th June.
Navy Sharks Squad:
AET J Humphrey (RNAS Yeovilton (Capt), Mne K Bridgen (40 Cdo RM), Mne J Blackburn (DNR), AB T Davies (HMS Liverpool), AB N Ramace (HMS Dragon), ET(WE) R Richardson (HMS Kent), AET G Jones (HMS Nelson), Mne N Huntley (42 Cdo RM), AB A Lewis (HMS Vengeance).
Lt S Cuff RN
Capt S Ashley RM
WO1 W May RN
Ms A Eastmond (Physio)