The Alex Alexander Memorial Cup Trophy 2019 season opened in style as Advance Fire Buccaneers played Queensgate Pigs Trotters at the South Sound rugby ground Saturday.
Both teams sought to lay down an early win before the excess pounds of the festive season take effect. In the end, the Buccaneers proved to be on fire while the Pigs took a roasting.
From the start the Bucs wanted to play a fast game with their firecracker scrum-half Dave Stringer leading a series of incendiary plays that threatened the Pigs defensive line. The Bucs kept the game going forward never allowing the Pigs to settle into any sort of rhythm.
The opening try, scored by Bobby Lowe, came after sustained drives left and right allowed the Bucs to recycle quick ball. In the end, Lowe still had some work to do but stepped off his right foot to power his way to the line from about 15 metres out.
The second try was even better. Bucs’ full-back Joel Clark took a quick throw-in to himself around the 40m line and proceeded to run round the whole sounder of Pigs toward the opposite corner. Finally tackled about 10 metres out, the Bucs moved the ball swiftly through fast hands until Peter de Vere delivered a beauty of a pop pass to the on running Lowe to surge through to the line.
Although Lowe had got the points it was Tommy Kehoe, the sixteen year old debutant fly half, who impressed with a wonderful variety of short passes, missed passes and tactical grubber kicks. Mature beyond his years, his decision making was impressive.
The Bucs domination continued with Jon Stott making several barrelling runs down the pitch. No need for a side step from this chap. Stott and de Vere were making telling contributions.
The magic moment of the first half came when a speculative clearance kick from inside their own 22 slipped through the mitts of Pigs’ full-back Iain Currie around the halfway line. As he staggered and tried to find the loose ball, young Kehoe outsprinted everyone to pick up and dive over for his maiden try in senior Cayman rugby, much to the delight of the vocal crowd. He converted his own score to give the Bucs a healthy 19-6 lead at the break.
The second half provided more of the same and the lead was stretched early on when Kehoe, playing with increasing bravura, sliced through a split defense before giving captain Mike Luxton the inside pass for an easy score under the posts. Luxton had another inspiring performance and tracked all over the park with great support lines to make himself available to his teammates.
As the shadows lengthened the Pigs became increasingly frustrated by their lack of ball and interpretation of the referees decisions.
The final quarter became something of a procession and Stringer was duly rewarded for his quick tap penalty when he dived over from a 5m penalty.
He followed that score up with a second as he stole down the blind side of a ruck only 3m from the Pigs’ line. Stringer was not finished there though. Quick thinking again, he exploited the blind side of a ruck in his own half, releasing Joel Clark on the wing who chipped the beleaguered Currie to collect the bouncing ball and run under the posts for a final score of Advance Fire Buccaneers 45, Queensgate Pigs Trotters 6.