BUCKS RFC Vs Wanderers RFC, 20th January, Turf City

In their second game after the Christmas break, Bucks RFC faced off against Wanderers in Turf City. Having already lost to Wanderers earlier in the season, this game offered a chance to see how both teams were faring as we enter the latter stages of the competition. Wanderers began the brighter of the two teams, earning and converting an early penalty. Continuing this early pressure, Wanderers forwards crossed the try line only for Bucks to hold up the ball. The ensuing scrum resulting in Wanderers being awarded a penalty try. This purple patch continued before the half as Wanderers scored another try, going into the break with a 15-0 lead.

Bucks came out after halftime looking to prove why they were crowned champions last year. Jonny Barber converting an early penalty and once on the scoreboard, Bucks began to eat into Wanderer’s lead. When Adam Field decided to send up a speculative crossfield kick to the far corner, he was not expecting Nick Li to be the player running onto it. However, the diminutive hooker and his bright pink scrum cap leapt like a salmon to contest for the ball, managing to force the ball back into Bucks hands. The athletic and acrobatic demonstration resulted in Bucks scoring their first try through Gui Galy and his French flair. Bucks started to visibly grow into the game, the forwards working a well rehearsed lineout move and forcing themselves towards the line. Rob Grant taking the reward for the forwards hard work, sneaking over from close range, despite rumours in the bar that evening that he beat 3 defenders during a 50m breakaway. The following conversion from J. Barber tying the scores up at 15-15.

Wanderers, not impressed with having let a 15-point lead slip, managed to string together some phases despite the wet conditions. Putting the ball through the hands, the Wanderer’s winger powered through his opposite number for a try in the corner.  With the sides exchanging penalty kicks the score was brought to 25-18 in favour of Wanderers and it looked to be out of reach for Bucks. After some well worked interplay, Bucks got the ball to their flying Welshman (dubious heritage), Adam Field, who powered through to score a try as the clock turned red. Jonny Barber with a difficult conversion in front of him duly obliged and the game finished 25-25. Both sides were frustrated at not having won the game, however excitement is building at the top as we move towards the business end of the season.

BUCKS RFC Vs Saints, 20th January

An arm-wrestle is the only way to describe a game that almost went the other way, but Bucks pulled out an enthralling last ten minutes of joué rugby to bring home the bacon and lock in their third win of the season.

A long sixty minutes could easily be summarised in a few words – a tussle up and down the pitch - but we will save the character count for the last twenty minutes, which provides for some entertaining watching for those lucky enough to get their mitts on a copy of the archived footage.

At 58 minutes Saints, hot on the attack and on the Bucks 22m line, opted for an extravagant cross field kick travelling 40m across and 3m backward. The Saints winger was as reluctant to catch the ball as an expatriate trying durian as the imposing James Nielsen was ready to demolish him as soon as he got a hand on the ball. That’s what he did. The ball spilling to the ground, Bucks quickly pounced and Will Home streaked down the field, distributing what may perhaps be the pass of the season out the back door to the young, Jasper Blundell. At this time, the cameo game caller for the day - Boyd Shields - called in early “Ah yeah, we’re on here!”

Ranging down field, Jasper was reeled in and Bucks made another few yards before the stalwart clubman – Miles Peckham-Cooper – was viciously assaulted, according to the Bucks Legal Counsel, without carrying the ball. Not seen immediately by the visually impaired match officials, Saints pounced on the loose ball and pushed forward with some charging runs of their own, dotting down to open the scoring – only to be called back by the touchy, miraculously regaining his vision, for the attempted GBH on MPC.

From then on, Bucks took ownership of the game and dominated possession and territory. With fifteen left to play Liam Clews, leading with his debut Captaincy cap, turned the tide with a turnover at the breakdown. A clever box kick over the defense from Lee Woollard saw the Singaporean U18’s representative, Luca Mignot stream down the field. A swinging arm around the head resulted in the tackler getting a ticket to the sideline. Recovering from the high tackle, Luca took the quick tap and slung a kick of his own across field where Alex Simpson was lurking, snaffling up a bouncing ball before crossing the chalk for the first five pointer of the day.

With the momentum behind them, Bucks found another gear. Straight from the kick off, Jonny Carswell plastered the ball 60m down the pitch, pinning Saints deep in their own territory. A wayward clearance from Saints was cleaned up by Will Home and yet another peach of pass set the Bucks across the field. A smashing Grant Bourdon found himself on the end of the move and plastered his way through the defense, storming home from 30m to seal the game.

Well done lads.

Report by Nathan Hughes

BUCKS RFC Champs vs Wanderer’s Rovers, 13 January 2018, 1:30pm at Turf City Turf

Bucks 28 – Wanderer’s Rovers 0

Coming of a dominant win at the end of last year and looking to make headway into the top four of the table Bucks turned up to make early inroads. Running the ball early from their own half Sou Miyake answered the call from his right side wing and ran a superb support line on the left side of the park to pick up a favorable bounce of the ball from a chip kick and dotted down under the sticks. Not long after Adriel Choy, running on the left wing, pulled out a dummy pass on the last defender selling him a ticket to catch you later alley, and cashed it in for another five.

Going forward Bucks created opportunities aplenty - with strong carries through the middle, dragging in defenders from all parts of the field and creating plenty of space either side of the park. Ed Rayfield and Gui Legond worked hard around the field whilst Rex Rustling tackled anything that moved. However with a number of dropped balls and Bucks giving away easy penalties Rovers were able to hold on with the scoreline 14-0 at the halftime break.

Coming fresh of the Christmas and New Year’s break the game had a number of stoppages  with players going down and a big thanks must go out to the medical staff and Physio’s who worked overtime to look after the lads from both teams throughout.

With Bucks hot on attack early into the second half Rover’s held secure defending their own line on and repelled the Bucks attack. An ongoing issue for Bucks was repeated infringements around the ruck area which cost them significant meters and momentum - something they will be looking to rectify as the season gets near the business end.

A stand out for the day Ian Cheong, filling in at No.9 for the day, produced an individual piece of brilliance picking the ball from the base of a ruck and slicing through defenders left and right was able to score and convert his own to widen the scoreline midway through the second. And when Bucks finally managed to get the ball back into Sou’s hands again he didn’t disappoint by running 60 meters on the right wing to dot down for a second.

For the first time this season Bucks kept the opposition to zero, a sign that defensive patterns are coming into alignment – it will be interesting to see what they produce when they can keep the ball in hand for longer and not give away so many penalties. Stay tuned.

Bucks 28 (A.Choy, S.Miyake (2), I.Cheong); J.Carswell 2 cons, I.Cheong 2 cons)
Wanderer’s Rovers 0

BUCKS RFC Champs vs Gaulois, 02 December 2017, 3:00pm at Turf City Turf

Bucks 3 – Gaulois 21

Having a bye the previous weekend Bucks 2 regrouped for their second game of the season welcoming  Gaulois to their home ground at Turf City.

A last minute ground change saw both teams run out on the artificial turf which promises a flat even surface for fast running rugby but makes for one fierce arena as the sun preheats its rubber deck ready to bake any man who dares run upon its surface.

Gaulois with two early season wins arrived with a towering and strong forward pack who got stuck into their work early disrupting the Bucks set pieces. Despite their size however Bucks held their own initially and after a series of Gaulous infringements Greg Hawe, on debut running at 15 for Bucks, secured the first points of the game slotting three from out in front.

However, unlike their previous game that’s where points remained for Bucks. Despite dominating territory for much of the first half they weren’t able to convert any more points as strong defense and a symphony of errors plagued throughout.

With Gaulois dominating the set piece Bucks resorted to keeping the ball moving with quick taps from all parts of the field in a bid to catch their opposition unawares. Bucks carried strongly and created great opportunities – No.2 Casey Lim humbled the Gaulois defense with a barnstorming run up the midfield midway through the first half, and Rob Storey -  a shining light for the Bucks – dominated in defense and created opportunities in the midfield whenever he touched the ball. It was quick thinking from substitute lock Christian Moersheim who got closest for the Bucks after a quick tap from 5m out saw him cross the line only to have the ball knocked from his hands as Gaulois scrambled in defense.

Credit to Gualois who played some smart footy: in defense often switching between not committing anyone to the breakdown after making the tackle but rather opting to realign to receive the next wave Bucks threw at them and then at times swarming the breakdown to create the turnover. On attack their big forwards carried well and made good use of the offload in the tackle as Bucks aimed low to try bring the big men down.

Gaulos went into the break ahead 7 to 3 and things didn’t get any easier for Bucks who received two yellows cards which left them a man down for a majority of the second half. A tough day at the office for Bucks who will be feeling this one got away on ‘em, nevertheless, well done to Gualois who persisted and came away with the result.

Bucks 3 (Greg Hawe 1 pen)
Blacks 21 (3 tries)


BUCKS RFC Champs vs Bedok Kings 2, 16 December 2017, 1:30pm at Turf City Grass

Bucks 55 – Bedok Kings 17

With cloud overhead and a gentle north-westerly removing any hint of moisture from the surface conditions were as perfect as you could get for a game of footy in Singapore and the Bucks took early advantage.

The start was equally as impressive for the Bucks who with the first attacking stoke of the game unleashed an early cross field kick on their 40m line. Sou Miyake on the wing reigned in the ball and with absolute class, stepped his opposite  before linking up with Adam Field, inside centre, who was able to dot down under the posts with only a minute thirty having ticked by. Adam running straight and hard made it difficult for defenders all day and had three scores under his belt before the break showing why he is a key signing for club this season.

At the fifteen minute mark Bedok produced a wonderful piece of mauling work, having received a penalty and having kicked deep into the Bucks territory. They secured the lineout and were well rewarded as they pushed over for five. That’s generally where the festivities stopped for Bedok as Bucks rolled in a sequence of five unanswered tries. Rob Storey, running outside Adam at Centre, wasn’t to be outdone by his inside number and scored a brace of tries himself. With piercing runs up the middle of the field, timing onto the ball Bedok struggled to keep a lid on the dynamic centers on show. The Bucks forward pack were strong in the set piece and dominant at the breakdown allowing the backs to showcase an array plays not seen in earlier parts of the season and went into the break well ahead.

Whilst the lads were sucking in the big ones and topping up on the water at half time the weather had other ideas on how this game would play out.  A torrential downpour swept through and threatened to blow away what little shelter was available for the congregation of spectators and players alike. The fields quickly turned to lakes and an adjudication session was required by all officials to determine if the game would continue. After a significant delay it was game on.

Bedok to their credit adapted best to the new conditions and struck back first. Persisting with kicking to the corners and grafting out a try with some carries from their big men around the fringes. With the game a mix between water polo and petanque, the ball stopping dead every time it hit the ground, it would be fair to say it was a forwards gme from here on in.

Eoin Mullen, No.2, wasn’t taking any backward steps running significant numbers of meters up the middle of the park. After a quick switch of direction play from thirty meters out saw the Bucks get within meters of the line Eoin was rewarded when charging at the line with a couple of with lads at his side driving him over for a maximum. Soon after the young lock forward Liam Clews running like a fly half from halfway created space for his forward counterparts on the wing before Robin Prince found himself in space 40 yards from the line and cantered in for try.

Bedok again came back for another but by that stage it was little too much of a hill to climb this time around. Rob Storey looking to take a very rare four tries home managed to carve his way through swathe of defenders near the final whistle – however the conditions getting the better of the situation and having the last laugh the ball slipped from his grasp. However, his form being unquestionable, congratulations are due with his subsequent call up the Premiership team.

BUCKS RFC Mens Prems VS Wanderers Prems, 2nd Dec 5pm @ Turf City

Last year's finalists renewed their rivalry as Bucks 1st XV played their second game of the season against Wanderers last Saturday at Turf City. This was a game that both sides had been looking forward since the fixtures were announced. 

Similar to their previous outing Bucks struggled to gain a foothold early in the game, Wanderers used their size advantage in the pack to muscle their way around the Turf City field. With Wanderers forwards creating go forward ball and Bucks reduced to moving closer and closer to the ruck, Wanders managed to get over for 2 early tries. With Bucks defence struggling to cope with Wanderers on the inside they smartly went wide twice and used their overlaps to score.

With Bucks on the backfoot for the first 20 mins they knew they had to get back in the game quickly to avoid Wanderers pulling away. With Bucks applying pressure in Wanderers 22, the referee had no choice but to award penalties. A tap and go allowed Ian Mularky to get over and bring the game to 12-5 coming up to half time. The heat and physical nature of the game meant the halftime whistle was gladly welcomed by both sides.

Bucks knew they needed  to come out early and get some quick points after finishing the 2nd half the stronger team however it was Wanderers and their set piece which fired after half time. Again Bucks defence struggled with Wanderers big ball carriers and Wanderers created an overlap to go over in the corner again. With that try Bucks were 19-5 down and began to chase the game, Bucks started to play with more possession however Wanderers were able to frustrate play and slow down the game. After a piece of dangerous play, Wanderers had a man sent to the bin and with the numbers advantage Bucks got their rolling maul going and scored through Ed Rayfield, scoring on debut. 

After Wanderers gave away another penalty Bucks went to the corner to set up another and get there 2nd score of the half, this time Tom Dunsmore crossing the whitewash. However with Wanderers returned to a full compliment they wrestled control back of the game and scored to tries to leave the final score 33-15. Bucks will be disappointed after this loss, especially coming into the Christmas break. This period off should allow Bucks to work on some key areas coming into the 2nd half of the season and with their International players to return Bucks can only look forward with relish to their next meeting with Wanderers in the new year

Final Score

Bucks 15 (T: Mullarky, Rayfield, Dunsmore)

Wanderers 33 (5 tries)


BUCKS RFC Champs vs Blacks 18 Nov 1:30pm @ Turf City Grass

Final Score: Bucks RFC 39 – Blacks 15

The cleats of Bucks 2’s ran out on the loamy sands at Turf City for the opening round of the 2017/2018  season - running in six tries to three against Blacks. Having conceded to Blacks in the previous season opener Bucks were determined to mark a big impression this time around.

Conditions being fiercely hot and negligible wind to provide any relief – conditions were tough. The lads melting from the get go the early phases were dominated with what may have appeared to be an on field Secret Santa session as each team gifted the ball to each other with a series of knock-ons and turnovers. It would be fair to say the Bucks may have been the merrier of the two sides and generously providing nigh on 15 penalties to the Blacks in the first half alone.

However Bucks were first to post a score with Jonny (magic boot) Carswell slotting a penalty from in front and created some momentum with Rex Rustling soon after charging his way over the line for the first five pointer of the season after the Bucks spread the ball wide and some quick play from the ruck and dominant running from Rex.

Blacks responded with scores of their own but the Bucks managed to close out the half by dotting down for another five points after large gaps started appearing in the tiring Blacks defense and went into the break ahead.

The second half Bucks were able to reign in the discipline and string together some set piece plays. With a dominant scrum and winning good ball from the line out Bucks were able to capitalize. Charlie Osler played strong from No.8 and produced an early season highlight having been dragged down meters from the line only to execute an overhead offload for Ben Conway to waltz in for another maximum score.

The Bucks pre-season fitness proved the difference in the end and ran away with some wonderful plays resulting in maximum points: Ian Cheong produced a brilliant offload having received the ball out wide on the wing after Bucks forward pack were strong in the scrum. Ian ranging out wide and running at pace was just caught by his opposite before he was able to swing the ball around the defenders back to put the man on the inside in for another five.

Featuring for the first time in Championship colours Liam Clews stepped up from the clubs Under 18 side to dominate the lineout and ran strongly throughout the game – a promising talent for the club. Also on debut and also up from U.18’s was Killian Midena who showcased an array of great running ball rugby after a quick throw from Ian saw Killian cast of and beat no less than 5 defenders to dot down.

As frustrations mounted for the away team the Bucks drove the game home on the final play of the game having earned a penalty after a lengthy altercation both on and off the field – probably debating I’m sure the nuances of using whole meal vs white flour to make pizza bases. It resulted in a rarely seen peculiarity with the Blacks beverage man getting a red card which gifted Bucks one last opportunity to roll out a set piece play. Graham Rushton secured the lineout well and Charlie Osler receiving the ball midfield, 35m from the line, dispatched defenders through the middle of the park on his way to smashing the ball down for a final score which brought the game to a conclusion.

After solid performances and great contributions around the Johnny Carswell, Charlie Osler, Ben Conway and Cian Cafferty have made well earned selection up into the Premiership squad –wishing you lads all the best.

Bucks 39 (C.Osler, R.Rustling,Cillian, N.Hughes(2); JCarswell 3 cons 1 pen)
Blacks 13 (3 tries)

BUCKS RFC Mens Prems VS SCC Prems

Bucks 1st XV began their 17/18 season against SCC at Dempsey field last Saturday. With on field conditions proving to be a test for both teams and with several new additions to the Bucks team it was going to be a test against an SCC team looking to make a mark against last years Premiership champions.

SCC began the brighter of the two teams and capitalized on some poor decisions by Bucks to score the first try from the game from a turnover. As the first half progressed Bucks managed to build into the game however dropped balls contributed to a stuttering attack. Fergal Touhy latched on to an offload and powered through for Bucks first score of the game. With the conversion kicked Bucks began to impose themselves on the game.

More sustained pressure from the forwards allowed Bucks to camp near SCC's tryline and Adam Field on his debut powered through to score his first try for the club. Bucks entered in to half time 14-7 up, having struggled to deal with slippy ball and an SCC team determined to make everything as difficult as for the Bucks team as they could.

After half time Bucks initially looked they would kick on but SCC began to come more and more into the game with their forwards beginning to really put pressure on Bucks. With the penalty count against Bucks rising this pressure began to tell as SCC had a shot at goal to make it 14-10. SCC's purple patch continued as with a man in the bin they scored a try to make it 14-15. At this stage Bucks began to make personnel switches including changing their front row make up in the shape of Alex Muir & Ian Mullarkey with Jonny Carswell coming on at full back as well.

The changes had the desired effect as Bucks began a period of sustained pressure in the SCC half. With the territorial came coming to the fore and both teams reverting to kicking out of hand, Bucks forwards started to gain the upper hand. This pressure resulted in a penalty awarded to Bucks which Jonny Carswell converted to make it 17-15 with less then 15 to go. At this stage Bucks fitness levels started to show as they spent more and more time in the SCC half. With minutes to go another penalty was awarded and Jonny Carswell stepped up to put Bucks 5 points clear. 

Bucks saw out the game with a couple of last minutes tackles including one 5 meters from the tryline to stop SCC and eventually force an error which ended the game. It what can be said was an error strewn first game for last years champions, they will be delighted to get the season off to a winning start and remind the rest of the league that the success from last year will only serve to push this team to greater heights.

Final Score

Bucks - 20 (T: Field, Tuohy; C: Benkimoun x2; P: Carswell x2)

SCC - 15 (3 tries)