THREE IN A ROW FOR COLOSSI
Spartans 12 Colossi 60
RODOS COLOSSI made it three wins out of three with a ten-try romp in Athens as they beat Spartans 60-12.
Playing into a stiff breeze, Colossi thought they had scored after only two minutes when prop Vasili Bakarias crashed over, but the referee was unable to see the ball grounded and brought play back for a scrum five.
Four minutes later though they took the lead when a break by Themis Nastikas and debutant Stavros Katapanis saw the ball switched to the opposite wing where Adam Kambouris crashed over in the corner, although Byron Hutchinson was unable to add the conversion.
Ten minutes later Katapanis again broke free on his wing to be bundled into touch five metres out from the Spartans line.
Colossi stole the ball and a long pass from Anestis Karageorgiou put Hutchinson over, although he was again off target with the kick.
Colossi were now dominant up front, allowing Adam Tsuchnikas, playing his first ever game at scrum half, to keep a constant supply of ball flowing to his voracious back line and three minutes later Stavros again broke free, to be pushed into touch on the Spartans line.
The ball was stolen by Dimitris Roussos who fed Kambouris and the Australian grabbed his second try of the afternoon, although Hutchinson was still unable to find the target with the conversion.
Colossi’s next try came six minutes later as Spartans attempted to run a penalty from their 22.
They conceded a penalty themselves in doing it and a quick tap saw Kambouris notch his hat-trick.
Karageorgiou took over the kicking duties, but had no better luck and Colossi remained 20-0 ahead.
They scored again from the restart as Bakarias took the catch and fed Pantelis Arfaras who set off on a 40-yard run up field.
Theothoris Ananias took it on and when he was tackled it was Michalis Chatziioannou who scored from the ruck, Karageorgiou still unable to land a successful conversion.
Colossi were now rampant and five minutes later Hutchinson ran in for his second try from a scrum ten yards out and this time Karageorgiou broke the duck with a successful conversion for 32-0.
From the restart Colossi made it seven tries as several forwards combined to set up a third score for Hutchinson and, with Karageorgiou once again hitting the target, Colossi led 39-0 at the break.
Whatever was said to the Spartans during the interval seemed to have worked as they came out and took play deep into the Colossi 22, where they won a penalty 10 yards out.
A quick tap saw their forwards combine to crash over for their first score and with a successful conversion following, they had reduced the arrears to 39-7.
12 minutes into the half Kambouris replied for Colossi with his fourth try following a scrum on the Spartans 22 and Karageorgiou’s kick made it 46-7.
Good work by Natsikas saw Colossi back on the attack, only to be penalised on the Spartans line and three minutes later uncontested scrums were brought in after Spartans had run out of fit front-row forwards.
Hutchinson claimed a try after a quick penalty but the referee was unsighted and the score remained as it was for another ten minutes before a chip and chase by Kamboulis saw him feed Natsikas for his first try for the club, Karageorgiou again converting as Colossi passed the 50-point mark for the second time in three games.
Two minutes later Nikos Hatzinikos broke from halfway to feed Hutchinson for his fourth try and Kargeorgiou’s fifth successful kick brought up 60 points for Colossi.
It was Spartans who had the last word though as a short lineout on the Colossi 22 saw them gain a consolation try four minutes from the end.
A comfortable win for Colossi that keeps them at the top of the table despite slacking off in the second halh.
Their next game is on the weekend of the 14th/15th November in Thessaloniki against Macedones Evosmos.
THREE IN A ROW FOR COLOSSI
The island of Rhodes has more than its fair share of Greek history and last weekend its rugby team, the Colossi, made its own contribution when it became the first Greek team ever to defeat Athens Rugby Club.
The reigning Greek champions entertained Colossi in a titanic battle in Athens before the visitors ran out deserved 22-10 victors in the second round of this season’s league competition.
The kick off was delayed for half an hour after the referee had insisted on post padding and a remarking of the pitch for safety reasons, but the pitch was not to be a safe place for the faint-hearted as these teams came together.
A confident Athens side probably had the better of the early exchanges but it was the visitors who had the first scoring opportunity.
They spurned the chance of three points from a kickable penalty in favour of a scrum, but Athens survived that threat when Rhodes were penalized.
Things boiled up after 20 minutes when Colossi’s Byron Hutchinson was tackled into touch 10 metres out from the Athens line and a general free-for-all occurred, leading to the referee giving both captains a stern warning.
Five minutes before half time Athens took the lead with a simple penalty but they dropped the ball from the restart, it was collected by Vasilis Bakiris for Rhodes and he delivered the perfect pass to Ruaridh Thomson who scored in the corner, Gio Puckorius adding the touchline conversion to give Rhodes a 7-3 interval lead.
Six minutes into the second half, with Colossi skipper Anestis Karageorgiou off the field with a cut head, Athens mounted serious pressure on the Rhodes line, John Tsogas finally getting the score , which was converted to put them 10-7 ahead.
Atehns continued to press but theior own indiscipline often let Rhodes off the hook as Athens conceded needless penalties and often being marched a further 10 metres for backchat.
It took Colossi 20 minutes to get back into the game when Puckorius landed a penalty to level the scores..
Two minutes later a short throw-in saw Chris Panagiotopoulos stopped just short of the Athens line but Rhodes won another penalty, which was quickly moved to Hutchinson and the full back was driven over the line by his forwards for a try.
Puckorius missed this kick and another penalty five minutes later so there was still all to play for and Athens reminded their visitors that they were not giving up their incredible unbeaten record easily as they returned to pounding the Colossi line.
Twice in two minutes they had the line at their mercy, only for a forward pass and then a knock-on to rob them of almost certain tries.
Finally, at the end of normal time, a crunching tackle from Pantelis Arfaras saw the ball fly loose to be seized by Hutchinson.
He chipped over the Athens defence, who failed to deal with the kick and allowed Hutchinson to calmly gather the ball and stroll over for his second try of the game, Puckorius finding his range again to make it 22-10.
As the game went into injury time the Athens skipper was shown a yellow card for questioning the referee once too often, but Rhodes were content to see out the rest of the game for this historic victory.
It was the end of an era for Greek rugby with this first ever defeat for Athens but, as Rhodes player-coach Anestis Karageorgiou said later, “This result doesn’t mean Athens have become a poor side overnight. It is just that other teams are getting better – and this can only be a good thing for Greek rugby.
“ My side were all heroes today in the toughest game many of them have ever played and this result is a massive step forward for rugby on the island. I hope we can continue to improve as this season progresses.”
“It is always nice to have a win, but I must say, I was happier with the way the boys did it. They are showing signs of maturity. It is a credit to their application, concentration and discipline at training and on the pitch.
”We had quite a few injuries from the previous week and a number of other mishaps so the team was rejigged as of necessity. Despite playing a number of fellows out of position, each player stood up and was counted.
“That the commitment is there is expected as a minimum. The ability to execute the added demands of playing out of position shows a ripening of skills.
What really pleased me however was the way we stuck to a game plan, despite a disruptive match and lengthy delay to kick off. We insisted on our strategy and had the patience and faith to persist.
“On top of that, each individual recognised the importance of this by themselves. That is a little more than I expected. It shows there is some belief in this team, that is certainly a good thing.
Still, you are only as good as your last performance. We are looking as far as the Spartans in two weeks time.
Rodos Rugby “The Colossi” won the 2nd Pan Hellenic Rugby Sevens title with a proud 100% record in their eleven games over the two days of the tournament. In doing so they became the first sports club on the island or the Dodecanese in general to hold any national title.
For reasons best known to the Hellenic Federation the competition was played over two weekends. In May Rhodes travelled to Domokos, where they won all five games to lead the table by four points from Athens Spartans, Thessaloniki Lions and Athens RFC.
This was all repeated last Saturday in Athens with each club playing the other and the top four then going into the semi-finals. The job was made slightly easier when Lions failed to arrive, leaving each team with four games before the play-offs.
Colossi kicked off against Athens and tries from Scott Shaw, Red Newberry, Pantelis Arfaras and Gio Puckorius, who added two conversions, saw them to a narrow 24-21 victory.
Meanwhile Iraklis were looking dangerous with victories of 22-17 over Springboks and 19-7 against Spartans.
Spartans had impressed in the first round to finish second, but they were far from impressive against the Colossi in the next game as the Islanders steamed to a 36-0 win with two tries each from Shaw and Dimitris Kefalas and others from Newberry and Chris Panagiotopoulos, with three conversions from Puckorius.
Spartans lost their third game too, beaten 17-10 by Springboks before Colossi met Iraklis in the clash between the only two sides so far unbeaten on the day.
It was a close-run thing before the Colossi came out on top, 17-12, thanks to two tries from Newberry, one from Shaw and a conversion from Puckorius.
Athens featured in each of the two following games and looked to be running into form as they disposed of reigning champions, Springboks 24-0 and then Iraklis 31-5
Continue reading ‘THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN – Rodos Rugby “The Colossi” won the 2nd Pan Hellenic Rugby Sevens title’
Thanks to Martin for sending us the pictures from Lions vs Colossi’s game. This was the round 4 of the greek championship 2009.
St Lawrence College hosted Campion School yesterday (Friday 27 March 2009) for the first ever 15-a-side rugby match played between schools in Greece. Campion is coached by George Psaromatis and captained by Dimitris. They are a new team and were playing their first game. St Lawrence is coached by Liam Bellamy and captained by Nick Pople and has been playing for years. With their experience and depth on the bench, St Lawrence won 48-0. The players were 15-17 years old. Ted Cypiot refereed the game which was played by both sides with good sportsmanship.