Seapoint's Greatest Showmen beat Late Late Toy Show fatigue to triumph at DLSP
By Jaime McKeown
Amazing 8s make it 3 from 3 to dispel rumours of pre-blitz late-night antics
Sunday 2 December 2018 @ DLSP
A mere 36 hours after Ringmaster Ryan and his Toy Show elves laid claim to the Greatest Show, 26* of the Amazing 8s strode onto the pitches of De La Salle Palmerston to put on a Greatest Show of their own as they faced DLSP, Greystones and Clondalkin.
Despite the early start and playing at altitude, Seapoint were ready for action. A bleary-eyed yet giddy crowd looked on in anticipation, speculating as to what the spectacular spectacle would bring as the lads quickly set about putting their individual skills and collective strengths into practice. Tries and tackles quickly followed and there was something for everyone in the audience.
Coaches juggled the multi-layered roles of shepherding, coaching, refereeing and match photography while the Seapoint teams glided effortlessly in the dazzling sun from pitch to pitch like a well-choreographed troupe in a multi-ring circus, displaying the various characteristics of strongmen, acrobats and magicians - all that was missing was the smell of sawdust, manure and those flashing whirly things that cost a tenner and have a shelf-life of a whole two minutes after the show ends. And while there was no candyfloss given a strict nutritional regime still feeling the sugary effects of Halloween, there was indeed the circus staple of popcorn, albeit not until the final whistle triggered the traditional post-match celebrations.
After three matches, the appreciative crowd demanded an encore and the Amazing 8s duly obliged with a final act showing just how focussed these future Ringroses, err, ringleaders are when it comes to their art.
While Johnny, Joe and Ireland took Best Actor, Best Director and Best Film the weekend before in Monaco at the World Rugby Awards, with the reviews now in, it seems even the hardest of hardened critics had their hearts melted by the showstopping performances of the ensemble cast...
"A Triumph! Five Stars" - The Irish Times
"A veritable tour de force" - Luvvies Weekly
"Does anyone know who owns this ball?" - Coach Garrett
And while all present knew the importance of what their own skills bring to the collective effort, all earned a special and deserved mention in the reviews...
"Sam sneaked in a few cheeky scrum half style tries while Eoin ran and tackled like BOD. Luke and the returning Leo led all morning with brilliant individual talent while Ryan was at his attacking best. Hugh was a great presence in defence, ably supported by James and Ross who put in some great try saving tackles. Rory also made some fine tackles to cap a great team performance"
"Charlie was very fast, tacked well and scored a great try. Amaury has some sidestep on him and runs great support lines - he scored lots of tries and tackled very well along with James who is a speed demon and has some swerve to score lots of tries too. Dexter would tackle Bundi Aki (and his lesser known cousin Terry) if he was running full pelt at him - tackler supreme! Tom is a great runner with the ball and very strong. Sean is lightning quick and scored a nice couple of tries. Daniel is very fast and passed very well alongside Matthew who showed great strength and passed very well to boot"
"Luca immediately ran onto the field upon arrival and stopped a try from DLSP while Sam had a great day out with over 180m of ball carries and double digits in the passing and try count. Paddy threw his body on the line (and has the scars to prove it) and guest appeared for DLSP in one of the games, managing to take a few tries. Steven was in great form, showing good distribution skills and sporting cool Skeleton gloves and Jamie took time out from his modelling career for Tesco (it says here?!) to show Greystones some clever side stepping (every little helps!). Oscar had a huge amount of carries and his scoring was limited only by his laces. Bear played a vital role, passing well and encouraging his team mates as Dylan was strong in attack and fought tirelessly in defence making every tackle count. Finally, Killian got a couple of opportunities to show off his speed and sidestepping and the Greystones team had to work hard to contain him"
"The lads really responded well to all our encouragement ... all played great, good tackling throughout the team, good running lines and attacking with brilliant support play ... they were all switched on and really putting the effort in. It was great to see!"
So as the metaphorical curtain closes on the first half of the season's blitzes, training will continue in December as there is still plenty of work to do in the wings as we prepare for Act Two in 2019 and get the boys confident and comfortable with their lines and roles, making and taking tackles and recycling the ball.
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*If we're missing anyone who played on the day, please let the assistant deputy junior night sub-editor (Jaime) know so amends can be made, Corrections and Clarifications issued, and contributors flogged!