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rugby ball

UKAF U23s vs Hartpury University

UKAF 12 Hartpury University 38

In a riveting showcase of youthful talent Hartpury University hosted the UK Armed Forces (UKAF) Under 23’s in a clash that left spectators on the edge of their seats. The final score of 38-12 in favor of Hartpury tells only part of the story, as the match was a testament to the exceptional efforts and sportsmanship of both teams, particularly highlighting the formidable performance of a young UKAF side who only had one day of training before facing a mixture of highly talented BUCS players from the renowned Hartpury University.

From the kickoff, it was evident that UKAF came with a resolute game plan and a determination to make their mark on the field. The intensity of their play was matched only by their unwavering work rate, which saw UKAF contesting every breakdown and fighting for possession with tenacity. Despite being the away team, UKAF quickly established themselves as a force to be reckoned with, applying relentless pressure on Hartpury in both attack and defense.

One of the standout features of UKAF’s performance was their exceptional work rate. The players exhibited an impressive ability to cover ground swiftly, making crucial tackles and supporting their teammates in both set-piece and open-field sets. UKAF’s agility and speed allowed them to navigate the pitch effectively, posing a constant threat to Hartpury’s defensive line. It was clear that UKAF had set themselves a high tempo standard to uphold, showcasing a level of fitness and conditioning that pushed the home team to their limits.

Determination radiated from every player in the UKAF lineup, evident in their resilience even when faced with adversity. Despite the scoreboard not always reflecting their efforts, the away team maintained focus and commitment throughout the match. Their determination was most evident in their ability to bounce back after conceding points, continuously pushing forward with a never-say-die attitude. Tries from Lt Basty Jones and SPR Harry Johnson were well deserved and credit to the team, who looked to strike with a fast offloading game and the confidence to move from sidelines to sideline. The mental fortitude on display kept the game competitive and ensured that the spectators were treated to a spectacle of rugby excellence.

The physicality brought by UKAF added an electrifying dimension to the contest. Lightning quick ball from AS1 Kier MacDougall, big ball carries from LBDR Semi Tokaduadua combined with arial dominance in the line out from UKAFs Captain, Lt Basty Jones, all characterized UKAFs style of play, challenging Hartpury to match their intensity and speed of ball throughout the game. The collisions on the field were a testament to the commitment of both teams, with UKAF leaving an indelible mark through their sheer physical presence. It was a game where every inch of the pitch was contested, and the players showcased the true essence of rugby’s physically demanding nature.

While the final score favored Hartpury at 38-12, it is essential to underscore the commendable performance of UKAF. The scoreboard may not fully reflect the intensity and quality of their play, but their contribution to the match was undeniable. Spectators left with a deep appreciation for the skill, determination, and physicality demonstrated by UKAF, acknowledging that they played a pivotal role in making the encounter a memorable spectacle.

In the end, Hartpury emerged victorious, but both teams left the field having contributed to a rugby union showcase that celebrated the sport’s values of teamwork, commitment, enjoyment and respect. The clash between Hartpury University and UKAF will undoubtedly be remembered as a testament to the enduring spirit of competition and sportsmanship. UKAF can now build from these firm foundations as they prepare for Bristol University in mid-March then Harlequins Academy on 3rd May.

James Henriet


UKAF Line Up