Reed draws on Cooperians positives
PUBLISHED: 13:00 02 December 2016
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Player-coach happy with improved performance
Old Cooperians player-coach Pat Reed was pleased to see his side bounce back from their worst display of the season in London Two North East and draw with Epping Upper Clapton last weekend.
A 36-13 defeat at Rochford had seen them replaced at the top of the table by Diss, but a Barnie Moul try and 13 points from the boot of Craig Ratford earned an 18-18 draw against Epping.
And although they have now slipped to third in the table, with the league action taking a break this weekend, Reed was relatively happy with his lot.
He said: ”Rochford was appalling, but regardless of the result, there was an improvement from the week before.
“A draw is a draw and we’re happy with where we are. We asked a lot of questions of the boys before the game and set them targets and credit to them, the performance was above and beyond that.
“We had plenty of opportunities to win the game. Our second row was done for a double movement, which was debated, but we were not clinical enough.
All in all, it’s not too bad.”
Ratford also missed four kicks, which would have amounted to another 11 points on the day, and Coopers will return to action against South Woodham Ferrers at St Mary’s Lane tomorrow week (December 10).
The Upminster outfit were due to face local rivals Romford & Gidea Park in the Essex Intermediate Cup this weekend, but Reed added: “We can’t get a side out this weekend due to a lot of our players going back to their universities for old boy games.
“A lot of our guys went to Brighton, which has decimated our first team, and we’ve got another 10 members going to watch England.
“I would’ve put a second team out if I could to fulfil the fixture this weekend, but we haven’t got a front row.
“We wanted a different date and Essex agreed, but Romford declined. We were very disappointed with that attitude.
“It’s the Essex Cup, it’s about playing rugby and getting out there on the pitch. It’s been fantastic for us in terms of developing players and we offered to play on any other date, even midweek under lights, and Essex agreed.
“It’s not really in the spirit of rugby. I know a few of the guys there and it’s very displeasing, they wouldn’t rearrange.”
The lack of action will allow leading try-scorer Kolade Awobowale extra time to recover from injury, with Reed revealing they may keep the flying winger back until 2017.
Awobowale has 12 tries in six league and cup appearances so far this season, but Reed said: “We want to keep Kolade under wraps. The physio thinks he could be ready to play against South Woodham Ferrers, but we’d rather be cautious and possibly keep him until the new year.”