The ARU Corps rugby season started with a bang as usual with the inter-Corps festival at Aldershot on Wednesday 16th September 2015. This competition provides coaches an opportunity to blood new players and experiment before the inter-Corps competition starts and this year saw most Corps bring along large squads and get as many players on the pitch as possible. The competition as usual was divided into 3 leagues; a Men’s League 1 comprising of the Infantry, RLC, RA, RE, REME and R Sigs who played 15 a-side. League 2 comprised of AAC, AMS, Int Corps, RAC, RAPTC and RLC Saxons and played 10 a-side. The Womens League comprised of the AGC, REME/RE, RSigs/RA and RLC who played 10 a-side.
The day began promising but then shortly before the delicious hog roast lunch the heavens opened and we were treated to torrential conditions which endured until the end of the day. This didn’t dampen enthusiasm too much and to their credit the players and spectators persevered to produce some excellent rugby especially so early on in the season when skills are not as honed as usual.
The results of the leagues are at link which set up 3 excellent finals the first being the Women where the REME/RE competed against RSigs/RE in a tightly fought game which finished 5-5 at full time and then went into extra time which the REME/RE seized the opportunity to score in the dying minutes and won 10-5.
The League 2 final was between AAC and the Int Corps which again was fiercely competed in slippery conditions and looked set to finish at 5-5 at full time when the AAC managed to break the Int Corps line and score to close the game out at 10-5.
The League 1 final was competed for between the Infantry and the Gunners
This game as you can expect by these 2 big clubs was full of big hits as the payers tried to break through each others defensive line and we saw both teams camped in respective 22s for a considerable amount of time but not managing to break through and score. The heaven really opened in the second half of this match and after a sustained amount of pressure in the Infantry’s 22 the gunners managed to produce some excellent off loading which saw their winger dive in for the try which sealed their victory 5-0.
The trophies were presented by ARU Director of Community Rugby, Lt Col Jason Gunning, before the players, management and spectators rushed off to find a towel and run a nice warm bath. In sum a great start which bodes well for the season which we all look forward to getting underway.