Super 10s Vets' weekend report05/10/2011
Steely Sheffield claim the Vets' spoils
A watertight defence and razor-sharp attacking prowess helped Sheffield to win the Barclays Wealth Veterans' Super 10s tournament at Jersey RFC.
In the 15th running of the annual event, Sheffield became the first ever northern winners of the Super 10s after a hard-fought 14-7 win over the holders, Gloucester-based Gordon League, in the final.
The winners were good value for the trophy, racking up 223 points and conceding only three in their five games en route to the final. Gordon League, featuring former Gloucester full-back Tim Smith in their line-up, did manage to breach the Sheffield try-line for the only time late in the final, but by this stage it was too little, too late following two early tries for the Yorkshiremen.
The win followed a near-miss for Sheffield on their first visit to the Super 10s in 2009, when a missed penalty goal in extra time in the final handed a get-out-of-jail card, and the title, to opponents Chippenham.
Jersey-based Gareth 'Big G' Davies was a member of the victorious squad, playing alongside several of his former college team-mates. The trophy was presented by Richard Corrigan of Barclays Wealth, a major supporter of rugby in Jersey and sponsor of the Super 10s for the second year running.
The event attracted 13 teams, including four Channel Islands side, seven English clubs plus Denbigh from Wales and the Super Frelons from Rennes in France. All players had to cope with the searing heat of Jersey's Indian summer, exacerbated for some by sore heads brought on by the lively 'après-ski' that is a feature of the weekend.
Sheffield, Leeds Corinthians, Gordon League and Cornish side St Agnes were easy winners of their respective groups on Saturday, and quarter finals the following morning, before the semi finals saw Gordon League pip St Agnes 14-7 while Sheffield won the Yorkshire derby 21-3.
In the Plate for lower-ranked teams, Jersey Wanderers had a strong second day to claim the silverware courtesy of a 28-19 win over Wimborne from Dorset, with JRFC Club Secretary William Church among the try-scorers.
The Bowl event for losing quarter finalists featured a final between Guernsey and the Super Frelons, with the Sarnians prevailing 24-7.