Against Barbezieux-Jonzac (UBJ), Sarlat Rugby brings home a reassuring win

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After a disappointing game last weekend at Belves, Sarlat Rugby needed to bring home a win for their first home game this Sunday. Over 800 spectators filled the Christian Goumondie stadium to watch the home team redeem themselves under the watchful eyes of Francis Torrent. Fans got to witness an action packed game, though Sarlat’s strengthened team spirit and good teamwork earned them the win.

Crowned by a victory last week at Isle, Barbezieux-Jonzac came in swinging and dominated the early game. Unfortunately their kicker Giraud missed his first kicking attempt, but redeemed himself on the second, opening the score for the visitors after a fault by number 8, Lacoste, who earned himself a yellow card in the process. 0-3, Not a promising start for Sarlat Rugby who struggled with discipline in their previous game.

Bordoli, who normally delivers consistently for Sarlat Rugby, also missed his first kick, but picked up a second soon after UBJ, tying up the score 3-3. Captain Olluyn’s men rallied and started to take control of the game with the ¾ fluidity which put the spotlight on the speed of Achille Massignac, their left wing. They displayed a renewed drive, with both offensive initiative and plenty of defensive solidarity, to counter the rushes by UBJ heavyweights.

Sarlat Rugby’s Achilles Massignac showed off his speed against UBJ

At the 21st minute, Eroni Tuwai managed to find a gap in their opponents defence and surged forward to score for Sarlat Rugby beneath the goalposts. Serafin Bordoli nailed the conversion for a score of 10-3. Not satisfied with their lead, Sarlat continued to build their momentum, getting into the rhythm of the game.

A mid-field breakthrough by Vaitkevicius at the opponents 22 was stopped just short of his goal; testament to the home team’s drive, and the visitor’s strong defence. With one more penalty by Bordoli to shore up their lead, Sarlat Rugby finished the first half with a 10 point lead, 13-3.

Sarlat Rugby’s scrums, chaotic and disorganized last week, proved dominant this weekend, and allowed their kicker to continue to widen their lead scoring only 7 minutes into the second half. Their line out continued to show some weakness, depriving the home team of precious opportunities in the scoring zones.

Another offensive breakthrough fell short of the posts, but, thanks to a wonderful team effort, the center Delmas broke through and handed it off to Tuwai who brought it in for his second try of the day. The successful conversion meant the score now sat at a comfortable 23-3.

Eroni Tuwai brings home a second try for Sarlat Rugby in front of shocked UBJ fans.

The offensive bonus was thus in sight, with less than 15 minutes of game to go. But the visitors, determined to keep their pride, pushed hard and kept the ball in Sarlat Rugby’s territory. With less than 10 minutes off the clock, off a series of penalties, their forwards pounded the home team defence who held strong. In the final seconds of the game, the wing Renard dived and brought the ball to rest beneath the posts, a worthy finish for a team which put up a strong fight. Final score 23-10.

Nevertheless, not all was perfect for Sarlat Rugby, there were certainly times when they jumped the gun. Overall, however, they were decidedly more invested, and held nothing back, showing that when push comes to shove, they have the dedication and solidarity needed. Their state of mind, cornerstone of Rugby as taught by coach Stéphane Labrousse, is slowly taking shape. There is room for improvement yes, and the work is far from over, but this Sunday’s game proved the team’s potential. A team from which we expect great things in the future as they continue to refine their game.

Strong team spirit from Sarlat Rugby who showed off their potential on Sunday.

So who was on the pitch?

With Ikapoté Fono and Quentin Wallois absent from the forwards, and Lucas Canéda and Etienne Pontagnier missing from the backs the team fielded was the following:

Puyraud. Olluyn (Captain). Okriachvili. Granger. Vaitkevicius. Fontenay. Lacoste. Dupont-Butez.

(Scrum-Half) Boyer. (Fly-Half) Garrigue. Massignac. Delmas. Testut. Tuwai. Bordoli.

Alternates : Dybich. Goursac. Goguet. Pardo. Mazelaygue. Peyrou. Louis Pontagnier.

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