BELPER RUFC youth team enjoyed a memorable ‘George and the Dragon’ tour to East Anglia where they recorded three wins from three games.
Hosted by old friends Swaffham RUFC, the tour kicked off with an eagerly anticipated ‘Dads and Lads’ match.
Belper showed they meant business quickly scoring two tries to take an early lead after which hard work from the dads, Gary Horrabin, Mark Brewster and Merv Holmes in the pack and try-scorer Andy Laven and Mike Dyer in the backs, Belper led 19-0 at half-time.
Swaffham hit back strongly in the second half and ran in two tries but Belper replied with some running rugby and tries from Jake Holmes, Frank Watson, Merv Homes and Josh Gwilliam ensured they got the tour off to a fine start with a 47-17 win.
Youngster Joe Smith was named man of the match.
Easter Sunday saw more familiar faces for a return fixture at Lowestoft and Yarmouth.
More glorious conditions saw a fast-paced, physical and entertaining encounter which saw a stalemate for the first 25 minutes.
Belper opened their account with tries from Josh Gwillam and Joel Dupree. A further try and one by the home team, meant at half time it was 19-5 to Belper.
Belper went up another gear in the second half, and further tries from Gwillam, Sam Dyer and ‘man of the match’ Watson, and some outstanding performances from Will Gibson, Jake Horrabin and Alex Sutton, meant that Belper finished with a second victory of the tour, 48-12.
Weary bones took on Swaffham Colts on Easter Monday with the hosts beginning strongly and for the first time on tour, Belper went behind, 14-0 to two tries.
The visitors dug deep and hit back strongly, Jake Holmes opening the scoring with some agility running and great support from Jamie Wayne put Watson in next to the post.
Belper’s rugby flowed and Richie Scott went under the post. More tries from Holmes and Adam Holland put the finishing touches to end the third game with a victory to Belper 40-14. Man of the match was Jake Horrabin.
Outstanding performances throughout from Jake Brewster, Donald Inns, Callam Cash, Jack Hibberd and Paddy showed Belper has got some exciting young players coming through the ranks.
Merv Holmes, director of rugby for mini, junior and colts at Belper RUFC said: “The team spirit throughout the weekend was what made the tour a very enjoyable and memorable one. We are looking forward to seeing our fantastic host teams in Belper very soon”.