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Olympic Club and SFGG teamed up this past weekend to play the New South Wales traveling side out of Australia. With only two-and-a-half sessions of practice together, the San Francisco All Stars fell to New South Wales 54-10 on Friday.
“It was a good opportunity to get the PRP some exposure in the offseason,” SFGG Club Director and back rower Bruce Thomas told Rugby Today. “The game was originally offered to SFGG, but it is very difficult to get together as a solid group of guys in the offseason. So we came together (with Olympic) to form a San Francisco All Star side."
The All Stars were initially scheduled to hold four practices together, but time and scheduling restrictions forced the Americans to less. Despite the limited practice, the All Stars hung with the regional representative side for the first 20 minutes, but a lack of continuity punished the Americans. “The first 20 minutes were a good, solid physical encounter,” Thomas added. “However, as a put-together side, we lacked the continuity that comes with playing together for a while. The mistakes started to creep in.”
New South Wales has been playing together for some time. “The mistakes we made they were very good on capitalizing on them and punishing them,” said Thomas. In the first half the American side scored 10 points, but ended up trailing 29-10 at the break. New South Wales ran away with the game in the second half, ultimately winning the game 54-10.
Thomas believes that the individual units matched up well, but a lack of cohesion killed the All Stars. “Our forward pack was evenly matched with them and our back line was evenly matched with them but every time we made some good progress we would make mistakes,” Thomas concluded. “If we had two or three more training sessions as a group the score line would have been much closer.”
With the All Blacks game going on during the same weekend, the PRP may not have gotten as much exposure as they would have liked. However, New South Wales will be traveling to Los Angeles in a few weeks to take on another PRP All Star side composed of Santa Monica and Belmont Shore.