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Rugby: Full match report from Gibraltar versus Jaen

I would first of all like to thank James Russo for being one of the first sporting organisations, in Gibraltar to provide SportGibraltar with match reports.

The game has been previosuly reported on in SportGibraltar however, this match report gives us a full insight into the closely contested match.

John Smiths Campo Gibraltar sponsored by Triay & Triay injected the element of the totally unexpected, on which the first Division Regional has always thrived on. This week’s competiti
on was a magnificent contest between the division leaders Jaen and lower table Campo Gibraltar, on the 5th February.

John Smiths Campo Gibraltar came into the fixture against Jaen on a high after the previous two winning and high scoring fixtures against Universidad de Malaga 83-0 and CR Almeria 34-6. The Gibraltar based team knew this fixture would not be easy as was seen earlier in the season defeat by Jaen. The match kicked off with both clubs wanting to score first. With the Jaen side far superior because of their Romanian U21 internationals than the Gibraltar based team.

Several opportunities came and went for both teams during the first half. With both teams matched in their defensive capabilities. Superbly organised and committed defence ensured that the Jaén never really created any flow and continuity. Ball carriers were confronted in midfield with a wall of red and white shirts. Only the Jaén talented multi position Romanian number 8 upheld his reputation among Jaén’s attackers.

The first real chance for the John Smiths Campo Gibraltar team came when at the back of the maul, when the pass went to Carlos Balloqui by cutting an incisive diagonal line across the Jaén midfield. The Gibraltar speedster showed enough gas to evade the cover of several Jaén defenders to dot down. In addition, the try scorer successfuly converted his own try making the score 7-0 to the home team.

With eight minutes to go before half time Jaén had finally got it right, the talented multi position Romanian number 8 loping surge on the right drew the Gibraltar defence across and created the space in which with a finely timed pass sent a Jaén colleague over on the far left. Jaén’s conversion attempt was struck wide of the post and Gibraltar’s lead remained within 2 points.

If there was a moment’s sign of Gibraltarian self-doubt it came three minutes later as Carlos Balloqui missed the simple penalty that would have restored their lead to 5 points.

Their 7-5 lead at the break was a precise reflection of the balance of play. John Smiths Campo Gibraltar sponsored by Triay and Triay had started confidently from the kick-off, running fluently and taking the ball through multiple phases as they sliced into the Jaén territory. They met with defence of the resolution one might reasonably expect for from a team at home in the opening minutes of the second half.

With the closing 12 minutes of the game Jaén began to squabble between themselves wondering why a Club further down in the league were beating them, compared to the match that they so easily won in October. The non-stop arguing in the lineouts between the Jaén forward, resulted in Gibraltar stealing the ball and making a counter offensive towards the opposition lines.

With John Smiths Campo Gibraltar on their last legs near the end of the match, a silly penalty, on the 10 metre line, resulted in a penalty kick for goal. Jaén’s kicker slotted the ball across the low left hand of the post. The referee was not going to give the points to the opposition as it was not clear if it had just missed the post, but finally it was given thanks to the Gibraltar touch judge Anthony Griffiths and his counter part from Jaén who thought it skimmed the left hand side of the post and the post as the Instalaciones Deportivas de Pueblo Nuevo de Guadiaro are so low. The gap had been closed to within one point. Disappointingly, as soon as the kick went through the referee blew the whistle for full time.

The final score was: Campo Gibraltar 7 Jaén 8

After the match everyone went down to Flaherty’s Irish Bar in Puerto Sotogrande another of our sponsors for drinks and a meal and afterwards to watch the Scottish beat the French. May we take this opportunity on thanking our three sponsors of the Campo Gibraltar team Triay and Triay, John Smiths and to Flaherty’s Irish Bar.

Match report by: James Russo Club Captain and co-secretary

Once again thank you for your support and we wish you success, in the matches to come.

Check their progress in the league: Primera Regional

View the Federacion Andaluza's website.

Coming soon: Last week's match report against Granada


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