Rugby: Nichol Shield Semifinals This Weekend

March 4, 2016

The men’s rugby Nichol Shield is set to be held on Sunday [March 6] at National Sports Centre, with the Teachers to face the Mariners and the Police to face the Renegades in a pair of matches.

With the Women’s National team currently in Las Vegas for a tournament, women’s action has been postponed until next weekend with the draw for the Scully Cup to see the Teachers versus the Renegades and the Mariners versus Police.

A spokesperson said, “League title holders Renegades will be looking to get coveted “double” for the second season in a row. Renegades club captain Richard Cumbers will be relying on the leadership qualities of key player, standoff and last year’s player of the year, Brian Archibold.

“The Scotsman’s deadly kicking accuracy has consistently been the difference in the season. Impact player Jamie Baum- new flanker and front runner for rookie of the year will be looking to extend his remarkable strike rate. Renegades forwards dominated Police last time with the street wise antics of Connor McGlynn, Peter Dunkerley and powerhouse prop Jahan Cedenio being the difference.

“Police will be looking to release their talented back line lead by Captain Tommy Edwards, Dan Cole, Rick Louw, and Johannes Oosthuizen. However judging on the last encounters of these two teams the game will be decided up front with Police pack stalwarts Rudoelf van der Westhuizen, Albert Olberhouzer, Adam Richards and Darren Richards put under the microscope.

“It promises to be a very hard fought match with plenty of passion- whilst there may be mutual respect, there is little love lost between the two bitter rivals. Referee Keith Hodgkin will be in the middle of the main event.

“The so called under card will be featuring the future of local rugby with both Teachers and Mariners fielding several of Bermuda’s U19 national team players. The game will provide a chance for both teams to salvage some pride after a disappointing season.

“With loads of new young players the game is expected to be a high pace match with plenty of open play and counter-attacking from depth. Teachers will be looking for the sage leadership of Chris Naylor to guide his mercurial back line and release the speed of the likes of Antino Perinchief, Jahniko Francis and Pat Paperplane.

“It may come down to the quality of ball provided by the forwards lead by Talshon Desilva, Aldo Campbell and Chris Stafford. Mariners are a club in purgatory as they were unable to field a team in their last league fixture due to unavailability and injury of key players.

“However when available they have a team of great potential and a good balance of veteran and new players- national team prop Dustin Archibald adds grit and technical know-how up front with outstanding youth player Chakote Wainwright-Basden inserting some flair and determined running from the half back position.

“It will come down to if the Mariners forwards can dominate upfront and their backs contain the dangerous Red back line. A key point to competition will be in the centers and can Teachers Richard Boyd impose himself on the proceedings. Referee Ben Jewitt will be pressed to keep up with the expected frantic pace of play.

“All in all it is looking like an exciting day of senior rugby with expected large partisan crowds present.”

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