Pocklington RUFC will review the club’s activities of the past season then move on to planning for 2019-20 when the club holds its AGM in its Percy Road clubhouse next Tuesday evening (18 June) at 7.30 pm.
On the field 2018-19 was a case of ‘all’s well that ends well’ after a season of trials and tribulations, mixed in with some stirring performances. The authority’s punitive decision to single out Pocklington and hold over a points deduction from the previous year put pressure on the side throughout in a season that was one of the tightest league campaigns for years. With some players moving on to give it a go at a higher level, and in particular an unlucky time with injuries which saw half the starting side miss half the season, including several keys players being ruled out for the long term, that increased the pressure and stretched the club’s resources to the limit. But good news came out of this adversity with a clutch of young newcomers being blooded after Christmas and immediately making their mark.
However, Pocklington went into the final weeks hovering dangerously just above the North 1 East relegation places – a position that they should never have been in – before finishing in ninth place in the 14 team division. The 2018-19 Pocklington 1st XV seemed to save their true form for top opposition – the win away at table topping Scarborough and doing the double over local rivals York, plus convincing home derby successes against Driffield and Malton stand out – but time and again they blew it against poorer opponents. On at least half a dozen occasions Pocklington looked to have a game sewn up, but then let their opposition off the hook to steal it at the death. Closing games out will be something they will have to learn to do in 2019-20.
The final record was Played 28 Won 11 Drawn 1 lost 16 Points For 685 Points Against 687. On the individual front the awards to back rows Will Sater and Owen Jackson were well deserved for their consistency and industry throughout; while threequarter Christian Pollock was both leading scorer (209 points) and leading try scorer (13). The rest of the scoring was spread throughout the side, with significant try contributions from centre Josh Britton (9), front row James Thornton (7), scrum half James Thompson (7) and skipper and lock Archie Fothergill (6).
Elsewhere, the Panthers found it tough going in the Yorkshire Premier Merit, especially with the demands from above, but they also blooded some promising youngsters, and they ended the season with some heartening results. The Pilgrims had a season to remember with a string of big wins and ended the East Yorkshire Merit runners up and play off losing finalists. The Colts struggled for quantity, but were not short of quality with five players getting into the Yorkshire U18 squad, and like the Pilgrims they ended the season with a big final, finishing runners up in the Yorkshire Bowl.
The mini and junior section continues to thrive with hundreds of youngsters turning out every Sunday, numerous notable friendly and cup performances, and more individuals making it to Yorkshire age group sides.
Off the field there were several outstanding social events, none bigger than the end-of season ‘Field of Dreams Ball’, which along with a sun blessed, record breaking Good Friday Pock 7s made a lucrative contribution to the club finances. It was money much needed, work started during the season on the much needed pavilion at the club’s Kilnwick Park ground, and Phase 1 of the project is now built. But more fund raising is still needed to fit out the building and make it fully functional for the many mini rugby players that use it every weekend.
Tuesday’s AGM will sign off the 2018-19 records, events and accounts then move on to elect the officials who will take the club forward for next season.