“On Friday 18th May 2018 a group of Raiders Academy Players U12s and U13s travelled out to Paris with optimism and excitement at the prospect of playing a match v Stade Francais away in Paris.
The Raiders Academy opposition, Stade Francais “Minimes ELITE U14” (mix of U13s and U14s), a top quality French Premiership Junior side who train 3 times a week, with matches played at the weekend presenting a considerable opposition!
The match was played in 3 x 20 minute periods and also playing full French M14 rules (15 a side, full pitch) which was new to all the players involved.
The Raiders Academy squad started hard and scored 3 tries through Hamish Williams (3:58) down the right touchline, Daniel Seymour (7:48) interception and Jude Raza (17:12) through beautifully executed back play leaving the team 15-0 up after the 1st break.
The second 20 minutes saw the French side bounce back and put considerable pressure on the Raiders Academy side, however the side from West Sussex held out and the score remained 15-0 to the Raiders Academy.
With the sun beating down, the squad tiring the Raiders Academy Squad put in a monumental last 20 minutes to finish the game 15-0 victors over a very talented Stade Francais side. A lot of determination and pride, with the squad working together to ensure they didn’t concede a try for the entire 60 minutes.
Well done to all the Raiders Academy young players, not only on the win, playing older players in Stade Francais, adapting to French rules but more so the way they pulled together as an exceptional squad of players displaying skills and maturity well beyond their young years.
A great experience and special memories for years to come for the representative squad.”
Squad photo (left to right)
Daniel Seymour, Miller Cole, Ed Tusler, Rory Minton (front, CPT), Theo Sparsis (back), Jacob Balchin (front), Conor McCormack (front), Jude Raza, Sam Mason, Brandon Draude, Peter Baynes, Zach McEwan, Hamish Williams, Jack Nay, Ollie Van Steenbergen, Max Weber, Dillon Nevill Lane