The Prep World Cup Tag Rugby tournament got under way today at lunch- time, with 32 players representing five countries taking part. The Rugby World Cup in Japan has already gripped the nation and we decided the best way to honour the event at Bridgewater is to hold our own tournament.

A mixture of Prep V and VI boys (come on girls, where are you?) were put into equal teams based on age and ability to start proceedings. Then the special guest (Mr. Suter) was on hand to randomly select the team each county would be representing. With some of the tournament’s big guns such as New Zealand, Ireland and Wales not selected, it was down to the teams from England, South Africa, Australia, Argentina and Japan to fight it out over the next seven weeks for the title.

In the first round of games Australia, led by captain Thomas, brushed aside Matteo’s Japan side with tries from Luca B and Thomas. A late consolation from Luca C was not enough to prevent a 10-5 victory for Australia. Meanwhile, on pitch two despite a try from leader David, England were beaten 10-5 by South Africa, thanks to tries from Dexter and Josh.

In the second set of games, Argentina, led by Craig were held to a 5-5 draw with Japan. Alfie ran in the try for South Africa, with a controversial penalty try awarded to Seb B, levelled the tie. Australia only score one try, courtesy of Luca B again, but this was enough to send England crashing to another defeat. Unfortunately, it is back to the drawing board for the England team, as they also lost their final game of the day to Argentina, thanks to another try from the agility of Alfie. We can only hope that next week the team come back stronger and that the actual national team will fare much better out in Japan over the next seven weeks.

In the final game of the first week of competition, it really was a case of saving the best to last. A thrilling end to end game, resulted in a brilliant 20-10 victory for the emerging Japan team, over a strong South African team. Tobias and captain Hari scored for the South African team, but led superbly by Matteo with two flying tries, aided by brother Luca and a solo run from George, Japan were just too strong overall.

Week two games will take place next Tuesday lunch- time, due to the AJIS Cross – Country on Wednesday. However, the league table currently stands thus: Australia on 6 points, followed by Argentina and Japan on 4 points, and South Africa on 3 points. England have yet to pick up any points, but as they say – a week is a long time in politics …. and sport.

Keep up with all the action of the World Cup over the next month and maybe even research the history, geography and culture of your favourite nation. Bridgewater will be cheering England on against USA tomorrow. The U9 tag rugby team will also be in action on Monday in a festival to be held at Manchester Grammar School.

The Rugby World Cup Scrums Down in Bridgewater

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