Exeter University Rugby League 40 – 0 Birmingham University Rugby League
Captain Healy declared himself “proud" as Exeter University Rugby League go two league seasons unbeaten.
Exeter Drop is so committed to bringing you fast coverage that we are posting this on our sister site, in the National Feed, until ours goes live Wednesday..
The thick blanket of cloud was not enough to smother the spirit of the Exeter University Rugby League 1s, as they recorded an historic 40-0 victory over the University of Birmingham to make it two league seasons unbeaten and reclaim the National League South crown.
Despite the biting wind, coach Matthew Cuss described the atmosphere as “buzzing”. Early errors from Birmingham and quick hands from Josh Jones allowed second row Matt Laventure to go over within five minutes of the kick off, a try which he subsequently converted.
Though Birmingham attempted to kill the momentum by delaying the restart, Exeter maintained their high-octane performance and an exceptional offload from Luke Evans set up full-back Rory Firmin for another try.
It soon became a case of men versus boys as Birmingham tried to play rugby union, repeatedly displaying a misunderstanding for the fundamentals of the game.
Exeter’s remarkable discipline ensured they remained defensively solid, whilst tries from Ed Saunders, Mark Goulder and hooker Josh Jones poured salt into Birmingham’s gaping wound.
Multiple injuries slowed the pace of the game considerably, with one player wise-cracking: “do you want to just play touch?”
It was not all good news for Exeter: in places the carrying was poor and their time on the ball was not always spent in the best possible way. However, the pros heavily outweighed the cons in this performance, highlights being a one-on-one rip by Cormac Healy and some magnificent passing from Faolan Lidstone to then put the captain in for a try.
Following the match, Cuss was modest about the club’s achievements, stating “it wasn’t our greatest performance, but there are a lot of positives we can take from it. We really showed the depth of our squad today and it just re-emphasises how our players need to earn their jerseys. We were well-structured, and that’s why we nailed it. Happy days.”
Captain Healy declared himself “proud we’ve wrapped up Nat South” and stressed the importance of “keeping the momentum going into the knockouts.”
Man of the match: Josh Jones. Excellent and consistent delivery all day, in addition to panther-like tackling and a magnificent try. An all-round class performance.
Exeter 40 – 0 Birmingham