Sports Report – 4th November

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The 1st XI had a tough game and were not at their best as they lost 6 – 0 to Denstonee. The girls worked incredibly hard for the entire game but coupled with the fact that they were missing three key players they could not find their normal rhythm. Well done to all the girls for the unfailing effort in tough conditions. Player of the Match was Ellie Hall in goal who made some fantastic stops.

2nd XI

The 2nd XI recorded a well-deserved 1 – 1 draw against Denstonee. An early goal gave the girls confidence and Ratcliffe enjoyed the majority of the possession with the midfield worked tirelessly and the defence remained compact with Lara Addison putting in a commanding performance. Hannah Grinham was simply outstanding in goal making several crucial stops and earning her Player of the Match.

3rd XI

The 3rd XI gained their first win of the season with a 1 – 0 win against a strong Denstone side. A fire seemed to be burning inside our girls as they stormed the Denstone defence. Betsy Poll, Izzy Pullen and Ellie Holinshead worked as one singular unit resulting in an excellent team goal which was finished by Betsy. In the second half Denstone seemed to rally and our defence had to work very hard. Holly Bown didn’t let a single girl past her and the defence made up of Caitlin Lawrence, Liyah Pinsent-Heskey and Alicia Boothroyd were unbeatable. The girls should be very proud of what they achieved on Saturday and should be excited for the rest of the season. Player of the Match goes to Holly Bown for her determination and effort.


The U15A team put in a solid performance against a strong and gritty Denstone side, who proved too much for our girls in the end. Ratcliffe had some good phases of play, but Denstone piled on the pressure and were extremely solid in defence, with an excellent press, which we could not break down.  This was a disappointing loss for the girls, but they will bounce back and moving forward they know what they need to work on. Player of the Match was Danni Hendry, for her gutsy performance and never say die attitude.


The U15/14B girls travelled to Denstone where they came up against strong opposition losing 5 – 0. They had a difficult and slow start to the game, with Denstone pressing hard early on. Denstone were organised in their pressing game and made it difficult for Player of the Match Sam Seidu to play the ball out of our D. Half way through the second half India Clarke picked up a nasty injury defending a short corner. From then on the fight and desire the girls showed was second to none, which they will look to carry forward into the next game. All in all, this was a disappointing loss for the girls but they have a solid platform to work from.


On Saturday, Ratcliffe U14A team travelled to Denstone College, and came away with a well-deserved 2 – 1 win. The girls started confidently and were putting pressure on the Denstone keeper from the off. This pressure resulted in Elise Atkinson finding the back of the net in the first five minutes with a fantastic strike. Annie Bridgewood and Amy Mason’s work rate was outstanding as they ran the ball up the pitch creating endless chances, however, none were converted. In the closing minutes of the first half Elise Atkinson once again won the ball in open play and found the corner of the goal making the score 2 – 0 at half-time. During the second half, Denstone picked up the pace and despite some fantastic defending from Maddi Bryant they managed to score. The team worked brilliantly together and should be commended for their efforts and a great 2 – 1 win. Player of the Match was Elise Atkinson.


On Monday the U13A travelled to Abbotsholme School in the second round of the ISHC cup, where they came up against outstanding opposition losing heavily. All the girls worked incredibly hard from start to finish but could not prevent Abbotsholme from winning the game comfortably. Player of the Match was Isobel Illsley-Ridge.

The U13A’s bounced back from a tough defeat on Monday with a strong performance against a Denstone despite losing 2 – 1. Although a little slow out of the blocks they showed some great counter-attacking hockey in the first half. Despite having chances they went into the break two goals down. They came out in the second half quickly and after a period of great pressure they brought the score back to 2 – 1. Some tough tackling from Chelsea Makandeni and great work from Tallulah Wood and Tilly Miles in the midfield helped to bring them back into the game. Unfortunately, the clock ran out before the girls could level the score, but it was a much improved performance with lots of positives to take into the next game. Player of the Match was Tallulah Wood, for some strong play in the midfield and for a driven finish from a short corner. 


The U13Bs had a tough game losing 5 – 2 to Denstone. A slow start from all the girls saw Denstonee take an early lead and they continued that lead throughout the entire game. Goals from Ella Clark and Isla Jenks saw Ratcliffe make a mark on the scoresheet. Congratulations to Eleni Malhan who was awarded Player of the Match and a special mention goes to Eleanor Newberry for a fantastic performance as goalkeeper.


The U12A team had a slow first half but a stern half-time team talk paid off, as the girls came away with a well-deserved 4 – 2 win. Player of the Match, Daisy Reddin, had an outstanding game. Not only did she score four superb, well taken goals, but her tireless determination also spurred on the rest of the team to a comfortable win. Jess Beardsley also deserves a mention, thwarting many Denstone attacks. Well-done girls.


Ratcliffe U12B team came away with a good 3 – 1 win as they travelled to Denstone. It was a slow start for Ratcliffe, but the girls soon got into their stride, scoring two goals close together towards the end of the first half courtesy of Sophie Packwood. The girls came out strongly in the second half with a goal from Katherine McCrindell to put us 3 – 0 up. There was a slight lapse in attention from our defence midway through the half which led to Denstone getting a goal back but the girls held out to comfortably take the win in a game that we should have scored more goals. Player of the Match was Sophie Packwood. A great overall performance from all those in the team, well done!


In the U19 county tournament the 1st team finished fourth after eight tough matches back-to-back. With several players making their debuts and others playing in unfamiliar positions, their efforts were well rewarded. Our attacking play was strong and Captain and Player of the Match, Kate Tyszka, led by example, driving the squad forward. Her shooting was also top quality as was that of fellow shooter Issy Hose. Joint Player of the Tournament, Olivia Back, in a new defensive position, frustrated many opposition attacks. The whole squad should be very proud of all of their performances especially pushing finalists Oakham and Uppingham very hard.

Olivia Back,

Sports Ambassador 



1st XV 

Although the 1st XV lost 47 – 20 the score line does not accurately reflect the efforts of the Ratcliffe team. Playing against a very physical Brooksby side, containing several Leicester Academy players, Ratcliffe rose to the occasion and were competitive in most aspects of play. Despite taking the lead through a Henry Wells try finishing an excellent passage of play, Ratcliffe soon found themselves four tries down. What followed was a really spirited performance which caught Brooksby by surprise. Ratcliffe eventually had to accept defeat following a series of injuries but not before Henry scored another excellent try, George Morgan-Jones dummied his way over and Jon Sommerville scored a quite remarkable try chasing down Brooksby’s winger behind his own try line, robbing him of the ball and touching down. The only disappointment in a very positive performance, notwithstanding the score line, was losing Harry Brooke’s to injury.

In what has become a very frustrating season for the team the 1st XV lost another very close encounter 12 – 15 on Saturday. Playing against a strong wind and in heavy rain the side battled well to reach half time only 15 points down. As the weather improved in the second half (and the wind dropped) Ratcliffe enjoyed the best of the play but were restricted to tries from Matt Linley and Matthew Ward plus a conversation by George Morgan-Jones. 


The U15 team are through to the semi-final of the county cup with a 58 – 0 win over Robert Smyth. The team played their best rugby of the season with the backs particularly impressive. Fin Back took Man of the Match for his try-scoring exploits.

The U15 team continued their winning ways away at Wisbech. In atrocious conditions the forwards initially struggled to compete. However, as the game wore on, better pace and fitness began to combine with some good running lines from the backs to secure a 48 – 7 win. Harry Cusack was Man of the Match.


The U14 rugby team lost 10 – 31 against Wisbech.  The opposition took an early lead straight from the kick-off, although a spirited fightback saw Ratcliffe score a well worked try in the corner through Rajun Gupta.  Ratcliffe competed well at the breakdown with Harry Ashberry and Xavier Henderson being particularly disruptive. Rajun capped off a fine display with a second try in the second half but Ratcliffe eventually lost by three tries.  Man of Match was Rajun Gupta for his two tries and his support play in attack.


The U13A and U13B team played Highfields School on Monday 30th October. The A team were far too strong for Highfields racking up four tries in only 15 minutes for a comprehensive victory. The B team match was a much closer affair with Ratcliffe eventually winning a hard fought game 20 – 5. Jaidev Nanuwa played well and scored a couple of tries. Tristan Turner also had a strong game but Man of the Match was Oliver McKaig for his excellent defence and hard work at the breakdown.


On Saturday the U13s had a dominant performance against a weak Wisbech team. When Ratcliffe won quick ball and moved it wide Wisbech could not cope and many Ratcliffe tries were scored in this manner. Wisbech had their fair share of possession but excellent tackling by Men of the Match Cameron Mulvahill, Hugo Illingworth and Toby Nesbitt kept the opposition at bay. Try scorers were David Seidu with two, Joe Atkinson with two, Phelton Tandoh, Wilf Milner, Cameron Mulvahill, Jacob Butler and Sam Gray. Final score was 45 – 0 to Ratcliffe.


Ratcliffe played an entertaining and free flowing game of rugby against Wisbech on Saturday.  The game was played in a good spirit with everyone willing to take on the roles of tackling, handling and filling in at positions where they were unsure. The first try was scored by the Captain, Tristan Turner, who went on to score three more tries in a coach’s Player of the Match performance.  Mention must be made of Vincent McKeefery who led the team with his tackling and defensive display and he was voted Players’ Player of the Match.  Lucas Kariolis scored two tries and Jaidev Nanuwa and Edward Offer scored one apiece. Final score was 40 – 15 to Ratcliffe.


In slippery conditions, Ratcliffe College U12 beat Wisbech Grammar School 42 – 24.  Ratcliffe were dominant throughout, maintaining the lion’s share of the possession and controlling the breakdown.  At times, Wisbech Grammar School applied pressure through strong runners, but Ratcliffe’s defence was resolute.  In attack, the team were adept at finding space across the whole width of the pitch, with Riley Kirk scoring two tries, as well as Harry Cregeen, Finlay Spencer, Harry Watson and Seb Welch all contributing one apiece.  Man of the Match was Finlay Spencer for his excellent game management and strong tackling.