After a gutterally disappointing result against arch enemies Monthey last week, it was just too depressing to write the report. The pre-match promise, “the season starts here!” was growing thin. The quality of players we were finally assembling, after weeks of injuries and absences, simply didn’t add up to our position in the Ligue B table. Whatever the possession percentages were, we certainly dominated Monthey. At an individual level, RCL men were improving overall, with plenty of exciting performances. But we still failed to click as 15 individuals in a coherent, finely-tuned team.
And despite our possession, we still couldn’t break through – with allowed tries, at least. Still, bad luck and near misses simply do not excuse our inability to put Monthey away. While we wouldn’t be shy in criticising certain referees’ interpretations of the rules, we really only had ourselves to blame for failing to secure the season’s first win. From this disappointment, a determination could come to sort out this inability to do ourselves justice on the pitch.
RCL 5 – 13 Monthey
Then, this weekend, things finally worked. While Lausanne2 were clearly a poor outfit – doubtless suffering the same problems we had for so many weeks – we have played poorly and won before. From line outs to back moves and overall rucking, RCL finally looked like a well-drilled, organised team, able to execute moves. Unlike last week, a majority of possession was not to be wasted once we broke into their 22, and thinking was calmer overall. This was a highly spirited, far more disciplined (less penalties from rucks!) performance. The work gone into training in recent weeks was showing on the pitch, with several younger players gaining in confidence and experience. The forwards worked with better organisation than before, showing, despite their size disadvantages, what they can do. Determination and passion has never been in question. The backs slung the ball around brilliantly, looking – as requested beforehand – like they were enjoying the game. From this, confidence comes.
The ability to players to switch position and play well was key. Even with far fewer injuries, we were still missing many players. The demanded the flexibility required for success at this level, and players didn’t disappoint. The less experienced players have come on hugely from September, and it was great to experience a victory. Still, plenty of work to add to this promising performance. The scrums, as ever, need a lot of work, and fitness will be a focus this winter break. But this work will be a lot more manageable now that we know things are finally working out for RCL.
RCL 55 – 0 Lausanne2
Yannick, Remo (2), Chris (2), SA Michael, Dennis, Raaaaaa, Captain Jean-Luc Picard