Renegades dish out rugby massacre
The Tridents were not only beaten, they were broken 80-17 by a merciless Renegades outfit as action in the Barbados Rugby Football Union competition continued at the Garrison Savannah on Saturday
At first sight it appeared the smaller Renegades would be at a significant size disadvantage when compared to the much larger and heavier Tridents. As one rugby fan commented: “It looks like backs against forwards!” One newcomer to the Tridents team, Kemar Edghill, quickly used his more than 100 kilos against the opposition but was unable to put points on the board.
Renegade Caston Howard quickly got hold of the ball and galloped away to score five points, while teammate Kevin “Shakira” Carter converted the kick for another two points. The Tridents mounted some offensives of their own, including some rolling mauls that left a shirt or two in shreds, but the quicker, more experienced Renegades added seven more points with a try from David “Galahad” Carter and the boot of “Shakira”.
Led by their experienced skipper, Antonio Gibbons, the Tridents rallied strongly, using their superior pack weight and sheer gritty determination to win the ball and enabled Stefan Corbin to fight his way across the try line. Gibbons’ kick took the score to Renegades14-7. Corbin is a former U19 player who is coming back from a long layoff. Everyone was glad to see his return to playing fitness.
Ramoun “Juice” Downes, Anquan Lynch (national U19s) and “Shakira’s” reliable boot quickly came into play for Renegades, and the scoreboard quickly ticked over to 28-7 for the men in black. Trident Troy Grant, one of the more experienced men on the team, put his knowledge, speed and agility to good use, but his team-mates failed to support his efforts, and he was stymied by the opposition.
“Shakira” scored a try and conversion, while “Galahad” went for his second try of the afternoon. The half-time score of Renegades 42 – 7 Tridents did not reflect the constant effort of the Tridents, but it did highlight their lack of experience and agility.
The second half was more of the same, while Kemar Edghill, probably the biggest man on the pitch, continued his offensive efforts, Mark “Bouncer” Leacock, Brandon Walcott and “Shakira” poured on the punishment, taking the score to 54-7. Spectators began to wonder about the possibility of Renegades scoring 100 points. Undaunted, Antonio Gibbons powered his way through the Renegades defence and executed a spectacular tactic that culminated in a “no look” pass to Leandre “Ice Man” Jordan for a beautiful try!
But it was too little too late as the Renegades simply poured on the power and agility with brothers Brandon and Darien “Duckhead” Walcott, ably supported by “Shakira’s” kicking, racking up point after point. Mark “Bouncer” Leacock came away with two tries, as did “Galahad”, and both Walcott brothers, carrying on the family tradition started by dad Curwin Walcott, himself a rugby veteran.
Things were not nearly as one-sided in the second match, despite Scorpions being short-handed as several key players were unavailable. Unlike the shoot-out atmosphere of the first match, this encounter came down to tactics and execution resulting in Emperors defeating Scorpions 29-5.
Emperors bolted forward from the initial kickoff with Simon Noble and Scorpion Kenneth “KP” Payne clashing almost immediately in a tackle that probably registered on the seismograph in Husbands. The resulting melee gave Romuald “Mu” Allart the opportunity to seize the ball and gallop home for another of his trademark tries.
Noble’s kick was good and the score was 7-0 to the men in red. Shortly thereafter, Emperor Mikyle “Honey Badger” Walcott (who plays for both the national U19 and senior XVs) blasted past a somnolent Scorpion defence to touch down another try, while Noble’s kick was good. The half-time score of 14-0 to Emperors reflected the visible lack of defence by the Scorpions.
Restart saw a rejuvenated Scorpions team playing the way they have come to be expected; using the sheer size and physicality of national players Stephen Millar and Kevyn Murrell to lethal effect; challenging their opponents and running through to score a try. Though the conversion was no good.
The action literally went from end to end, keeping referee Karen “Kazza” Holmes very busy as both teams showed excellent defensive tactics. After a particularly rambunctious tussle, big Emperor David Evelyn displayed some impressive footwork to score an incredibly ungraceful try that will live forever via social media.
Riding high on their success, the Emperors players flawlessly executed a complex maneuver that involved multiple passes between Noble, captain Jeren “Blinki” Clarke, Enrique Oxley, back to “Blinki” and then back to Oxley for the try, while the defence was left in the dust.
Despite notable efforts in the second half from Shane Taylor, Kevin Cobham and Shackeel Griffith, the full-time score was indicative of the gap between the two teams. This leaves Emperors with a perfect record thus far, and sitting atop the table.
Play continues this Saturday with Renegades taking on Scorpions at 2:30 p.m. and Emperors against Tridents at 4 p.m.
On February 13, the BRFU will host Friday Night Lights –– Sevens on the Savannah. This is a sevens tournament featuring local club teams and visitors HMS Severn, kicking off at 7 p.m.
Standings (after four weeks):
Emperors –– 20 points (4 wins + 4 bonus points)
Renegades –– 10 points (2 wins + 2 bonus points)
Scorpions –– 10 points (2 wins + 2 bonus points)
Tridents –– 1 point (bonus point for scoring 4 or more tries)