toos come out on top in a long awaited return to the field

Match report by Karl ROBSON

It seems fitting that after a 7 month gap since our last competitive match that the Cockerels and Cockatoos return to the field was delayed by one more day due a late issue with field availability but, after a long wait, the Cockatoos and Cockerels got out on the field down in Antony on Sunday the 11th of October for their first match of the season, and their first matches in the new North/South French Championship format. The new format will see two derbies be played this season further enhancing the friendly rivalry between the two teams.

Whilst both teams had lost some players over the off season, some linked to international players returning home due to Covid-19, the Cockerels had been more heavily impacted than the toos and as a result fielded a smaller side than usual with just 11 players. A talented core remains for the Cockerels though with almost all the players having played in at least one, and in most cases two, Cockerels premierships. It was also great to see Oliver SMITH, Elliot BAXTER and Mark VERHOEVEN play their respective first matches for the club, hopefully a sign of things to come as the club looks to blood a number of other new players in the coming weeks.

The first quarter was a tight affair, with both teams having a strong midfield group. A number of goals were kicked from the midfield with players breaking away from the contest before kicking long goals passing over the respective forward lines. The Cockatoos managed to edge ahead though with Ned MORRISON having a notable impact off the half back line in a different role to his typical full-forward position. Between himself and Brad GEDDES, the Cockatoos backline generated 3 of the teams 6 goals for the quarter, with young Victor AUBIN converting from a tight angle as well. For the Cockerels, Ben SIMPSON was at his usual best in the midfield, exploding away from the contest and peppering the goals.

The second quarter saw the toos take control of the contest but struggle to finish in front of goal as some desperate defending from Julien LEFEBVRE and George O’BRIEN prevented the Cockatoos players from taking easy shots at goal alongside some good work on the mark by Maxime MARGUERITTE. As a result the Cockatoos kicked 2.12 for the quarter and didn’t convert their dominance into a commanding lead. First gamer Mark VERHOEVEN stopped the sequence of 10 straight behinds with a snap and playing coach Steven TROLLOPE converted after the siren to help stretch the lead slightly. A highlight for the quarter was Julien LEFEBVRE’s diving soccer tackle to prevent Elliot BAXTER from scoring what looked like a certain goal.

The thirst quarter was a tighter contest as the heavens suddenly opened with both teams having less shots on goal than in previous quarters. The Cockatoos kept chipping away however and after finding their kicking feet managed to stretch the lead out a bit further.

The last quarter saw the Cockerels come out firing. Two goals in quick succession, one from Michael COWAN breaking from the midfield and another converted by Nathan BROSNAHAN who converted from a tight angle saw the rels reduce the margin. An amazing solo effort by Julien LEFEBVRE who won the ball at half back, handballed to himself and then launched a long kick to the advantage of Nathan BROSNAHAN who then walked into an open goal will long go down in the memories of those who witnessed it.

A couple of steadying goals from the Cockatoos though saw the margin stabalise and eventually saw them run out as 47 point victors, a result that certainly doesn’t show the competitiveness of the Cockerels side throughout the four quarters with little space for either team throughout the game.

A great, competitive match to begin the new seasons, both teams now look forward to their next matches and cross their fingers that the Covid pandemic does not further impact the season. Thanks to Andrew O’CONNOR who umpired the game, to Andrew UNSWORTH and Steven RYAN who goal umpired and to Maxime COLLADO who kept score and ran one of the boundaries. Great to also see a number of supporters come down despite getting soaked in the third by the surprise heavy rain, felt like a true Melbourne day in terms of weather. Also great to see Cameron WOODS and Tim WHITEHEAD helping coach the Cockerels and run the bench.

Go Cocks!


Date Temps Ligue Saison
octobre 11, 2020 14:00 Championnat de France - North 2020/2021


Paris Cockerels10969
Paris Cockatoos3963881161620116


Stade La Grenouillère
148 Avenue du Général de Gaulle, 92160 Antony, France