Centurions Minis get festival season underway

St Albans Centurions Minis

St Albans Centurions Minis - Credit: Archant

ST ALBANS Centurions Minis kicked off their festival season with a short trip to Haringey on Good Friday, with representation at both U9 and U11 age groups.

The North London festival was the first of a series of eight over the coming three months and it gave the Centurions Minis the opportunity to introduce several of their new players to rugby league.

The U9s boasted a squad of 16 players, including several new faces, some of who had never played rugby before.

With matches played at 9-a-side, head coach Gary Tetlow was able to blend the side with more experienced players and new starters.

The team came up against Hemel Stags in the first match and played some exciting attacking rugby league in winning three tries to nil.

Next up were Southend Spartans, and this was a very tough game, both sides demonstrated accomplished attack and defence and the two all final score was a fair reflection.

Medway Dragons provided the next test, Centurions coming out on top 3-1.

Most Read

Finally London Skolars stood between an undefeated festival record, Centurions taking the spoils 3-0.

There were some superb long range tries scored by the St Albans side, and some robust defence.

After the event coach Tetlow said: “It was great to get back on the field after several weeks of indoor training. With impressive player numbers it was quite a challenge giving all the children equal game time, and integrating so many new faces into the squad.

“The boys and girls applied themselves well, and as thrilling as some of the tries were, I was particularly impressed by the effort in defence.”

Squad: Nia Boty, Huw Dawson, Ben Dormer, Iestyn Foley, Will Grovestock, Niamh Kelly, Astrid Koppe, Gaby McGlenn, Zak Mrbate, Ahmed Mrbate, Ayman Mrbate, Callum Nazer, Lucas Osborn, Luke Roberts, Ethan Templeton, Finlay Tetlow

The U11s played as part of a Hertfordshire side with coach Craig Naylor welcome several new faces, as well as players moving up from last year’s U9s.

The Medway Dragons were the first opposition for the Stags, with the Hertfordshire side coming out on top two tries to one.

The Stags then toppled London Skolars 3-1 and lost to Southend Spartans 2-1.

The Stags’ final game was against the unbeaten Brentwood Eels, who provided stern opposition with strong and organised defence and fast attack, leading to a 3-1 victory.

Stags demonstrated throughout the tournament they will be a force over the season, coach Naylor added: “I feel very upbeat after this tournament. “It was great to see our players integrating so well into the Hertfordshire side.

“The next festival is towards the end of April and the intention is to run at least one Centurions side, if not two.

“There were several new faces involved and they all acquitted themselves well to the game.”

Centurions Hertfordshire representatives: Ben Costello, Cian Kelly, Matt Naylor, Tyrese Nazer, Gethin Wynne.

Centurions Minis training continues this Thursday at Samuel Ryder Academy Sports Hall from 5.30pm to 6.45pm, all are welcome.

In order to give as many children the chance to get involved in Centurions Minis, the club are laying on free taster sessions at Samuel Ryder Academy on Saturday, April 13 for those boys and girls of school years 3 to 6 who fancy trying tackle rugby league, come along from 1.30pm to 2.30pm.

On Saturday, April 20, any child from school years reception, one and two, interested in giving tag a go, get along at 11.30am to 12.30pm.

To find out more details email centurionsminis@gmail.com or call 07713472091.