Hereford Rugby Club's under-14 defeat Worcester 36-12 to win North Midlands Cup final (From Hereford Times)
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Hereford Rugby Club's under-14 defeat Worcester 36-12 to win North Midlands Cup final
4:22pm Friday 25th April 2014 in Sport
TWO years after a humbling series of defeats at the hands of South Wales’ finest, Hereford’s talented under-14 rugby side claimed their first major title, beating Worcester 36-12 in the North Midlands Cup final.
With eight of their starting team already working with the development squads at Premiership sides Gloucester and Worcester Warriors, the team topped a successful year with cup success.
Two-try hauls from Ollie Cooper and man of the match Cam Terry saw the side ease hope having taken the early lead in the final at Dudley Kingswinford last week.
Prop Matt Frost and winger Sami Ratu also crossed, and Joe Vaughan hit three conversions as Hereford blew away their county rivals.
Worthy winners, Hereford had disposed of Luctonians with similar ease in the semi-finals, and knocked out Sutton Coldfield 48-0 before that.
All the 30-man squad played a role in the final – but it is a squad much-changed from two years ago, with new faces and a new attitude.
Two seasons ago, Hereford travelled to a tournament in Abergavenny with a confident squad and were taught a lesson by Cardiff-based Rumney RFC.
That defeat galvanised the group and since then they have played and won both the Bournemouth Tournament and the Stourbridge Festival, and become dominant this side of the border.
This year they had the chance for a rematch against Rumney – held at the legendary Cardiff Arms Park.
While the boys suffered a narrow loss, the performance showed how far they had come in 12 months.
With players now working with Premiership club coaches throughout the season – many attending two-day Elite Player Development Camps over the Easter holidays – and fifteen of the side training with the county squad, the skill level of the team has improved dramatically.
And coaches Nick Terry, Ben Probert and Dan Ratu are now looking to find regular fixtures against the likes of Pontypool, Bridgend and Rumney to give their side a greater challenge.