Vagabonds Ladies face home tie against Halifax
Report by Dave Christian:
Douglas travel to Blundellsands on Saturday to face fourth place Firwood Waterloo in North One West. Waterloo are scoring an average of nearly 30 points per game so far this season which is uncannily close to Douglas’ conceding figure. On that basis fourth v twelfth would appear to have only one outcome but Douglas’ performances are steadily improving. The Martin twins and Charlie Henthorn provide plenty of wide space and with the favourable weather forecast they may just get a chance to show it. Seth Waterworth’s injury looks like his season may be done but the inclusion of Glyn Hooson-Owen in the tight five makes up for that.
Vagas Ladies home again
The quirks of the fixture list mean that Vagas Ladies now have a little run of three home fixtures in as many weeks. Halifax are the visitors this weekend and after a 5-5 draw away in Yorkshire and a morale boosting win last Saturday, they’ll fancy their chances of back to back victories.
There were no reported injury concerns from last Saturday and Lauren Ellison was also back in action after fearing her season may be over following a Christmas friendly injury. The Vagas from five were on top last week and Jules Harrison was a giant in midfield. This all augurs well.
Ravenscroft Manx Cup returns
It’s been three weeks since the Manx Cup sides last ran out. The Vagabonds Ramsey match from a fortnight ago was postponed due to the snow while the scheduled Nomads/Douglas game was postponed by agreement between the clubs. This weekend we have a full round of games and it will be interesting to see who has benefitted from the lay off and indeed, who has suffered.
Probably the most intriguing tie this week is at Ballakilley where Ramsey will be visiting Southern Nomads. Ramsey have without doubt been the form team so far this season but are carrying a casualty list. Tom Moffatt, Eddie Lord and skipper Matt Meechan have all been out with assorted ailments and the Richmond brothers Dan and Jake both picked up knocks last week playing for the seconds. Lord is reported to have started light training but is unlikely to be fit for this game while Meechan should be OK after some stitches are removed. The Richmonds were reported as OK after the game last week so will probably play a part.
Nomads had a pretty poor Manx Trophy run but since then have started to come good. They beat Vagabonds 41-12 around a month ago which suggests they’ll be very competitive here. The half back pairing of Mark Young and George Collister works really well and Young can kick his goals too. Outside them Django Kinley provides the x-factor and has form with the boot too. This game could well run much closer than the formbook suggests.
At Port-e-Chee Sure Vagabonds visit Douglas Celts. In the reverse fixture, the Celts were right in the the game at half time trailing just 12-7 but capitulated in the second half and lost 76-7. Despite the hiccup at Nomads, Vagas will be tough to beat for the Celts. Stephan de Beer looks like a useful acquisition for Vagas’ back row and Ethan Kermode showed great maturity last Saturday for the Hornets away at Ramsey B. Mix these newer players with some of the more experienced players like Paul Howard and Matt Rockwell and Vagas have a pretty potent mix. Douglas will be limited by the personnel available after the first team travel. A number of Celts are now getting first team runs and a Celts side missing the likes of Dave Sherwin, Nathan Hinks and Jack Shimmin will find like difficult even on home turf.
Fixtures March 4-5
Under 14 Friendly
Ramsey v Tytherington School @ Mooragh Park ko 6.00pm
North One West
Firwood Waterloo v Douglas @ Waterloo ko 2.15pm
Womens NC1 North West
Vagabonds v Halifax @ Ballafletcher ko 2.00pm
Ravenscroft Manx Cup
PDMS Southern Nomads v Ramsey @ Ballakilley Park ko 2.15pm
Douglas Celts v Sure Vagabonds @ Port-e-Chee ko 2.15pm