In October 2003 a representative team assembled from Melbourne University residential colleges was assembled to take on Old Xavier for the 04th E.M. Shaw Cup. With two teams dedicated to playing attacking rugby, a sunny day, a beatiful field at Xavier College, and rugby World Cup fever in the air the stage was set for a rugby exhibition.
The match started at a frenetic pace with both teams passing the ball around more like a game of touch than a rugby match. But after the early arm-wrestle it was the strong old Xavier forward to powered over as Nick “Bacon” Aitken dived straight over the top of a maul to score in an unorthodox fashion. However the team from the college crescent quickly hit back. Old xavier gave a away a penalty on its own line, from which Andy Meagher took a quick tap and threw the ball wide where Richard Lowe broke through weak tackling to score.
The play then see-sawed for a short period with both teams spinning it wide and having thier chances. However when the College XV spun it wide the the forwards were to slow across and the ball was pilfered. The Old Xavier half back was on hand to spin it to Marty Tighe who chipped a flat footed defence to score his second in the corner. From then the Old Xavier forwards took control barnstorming throught the centre setting up the attack for the free running backs as Old Xavier piled on two more tries.
The College XV did however have plenty of posession and attacked for long period but lacked the finishing. However they were rwarded towards the end of the game as the Old Xavier defence (so good for long periods) missed a atckle and Dou Ellinger scored a simple try that a fair reward for the College team.
The match was on the whole played in very good spirits. However Steve Brydon playing as a guest for the college team gave plenty of lip. This however backfired on him as after abusing Peter Shaw as being pathetic and a disgraced had to watch in anger as the “p***weak” player capped of a great day bu scoring next to the posts.
All in all the day was a celebration of rugby played by both team as it should be in an attacking, sporting, and positive manner.
- Nick “Bacon” Aitken goes straight over the top of the maul to score:
- The Crescent XV spin the ball wide and Richard Lowe takes advantage of some poor tackling.
- The ball is turned over and spun wide as Marty Tighe scores of a chip.
- Marty Tighe scores agin after some barnstorming runs from the forwards
- Mark Bowker steps his way throught the College defence of a quick turnover:
- The Xavier winger scores as he wrong foots the defence:
- Doug Ellinger breaks through pathetic tackling to score:
- Steve Brydon gives Pete Shaw a serve who promptly answers by scoring beside the posts:
- Here is a full gallery of various photos taken on the day: