Anthony Blues – Paris Cockatoos


02/04/2022 – Championnat de France 2021/2022 / 2021/2022 French Championship – Karl ROBSON


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Paris Cockatoos10455974101474

Round 6 of the Championnat de France saw the Antony Blues take on the ladder leading Paris Cockatoos out at the plaine de jeux Mortemart in the Bois de Vincennes in the east of Paris. A last minute cancellation of the original field booking at the normal ground at Stade de la Grenouillère in Parc de Sceaux lead to much uncertainty as to whether the match could go ahead with an initial date change to the Sunday not being possible and another later date not available due to a busy end of season calendar and the public holidays in May. As a result the match was played on Saturday as scheduled but at the ‘traditional’ home ground of the Paris Cocks, the Bois de Vincennes.

With both teams undermanned due to these last minute changes and covid impacts sidelining Cockatoos coach Steven ‘Trolley’ TROLLOPE, Cockatoos team manager Brad GEDDES and Cockatoos french national team midfielder Julien ‘Dags’ DAGOIS in the lead in to the match, a 10 man Paris Cockatoos team took on an 11 man Antony Blues team. The Blues got off to a good start kicking with a strong wind, kicking an early goal from a clearance before the game tightened up. The Cockatoos had a strong run of the play but were unable to impact the scoreboard with a number of behinds and misses before an exchange of goals led to a close quarter time margin with Cockatoo Sean ‘Porno’ BARKER snapping an excellent goal from the pocket.

The second quarter saw the Cockatoos get off to a very quick start with 3 goals kicked in quick succession in the first five minutes with Callum D’SOUZA starting to put his mark on the midfield contest and Andrew ‘Senko’ SENKANS, back from Mali for a couple of weeks and out of seeming footballing retirement, starting to take strong marks in the forward line. Steven RYAN continued to provide a strong marketing target up forward for the Blues in an unfamiliar forward role seeing him reunited with Paris Cockatoos founding coach Andrew ‘Swadda’ UNSWORTH deployed at fullback in an equally unfamiliar role for him. A massive thanks to Swadda for coaching for the day in Trolley’s absence. A head knock to Steven RYAN saw the blues lose some of their structure and the Cockatoos capitalised to take a 23 point lead into half time off the back of a 5 goal to 1 quarter.

With both teams tiring and the wind still blowing strong, the final two quarters turned into a war of attrition. Steven RYAN came back onto the field to help Antony continue to keep up the rotations with Dasun and Cyril holding their own in the midfield for the Blues and causing the Cockatoos issues. Strong rebound from Nicolas LEVEQUE from fullback was also allowing the Blues to keep repelling the toos attempts to put the game away.

Various niggling injuries to Cockatoos Thomas ‘Zeze’ AZEMARD (head knock), Sean BARKER (head knock) and Clément ‘Bobby’ BOUCHET (ankle) saw the Cockatoos team struggling to keep 9 players on the field in the second half of the game. A massive effort from Jean ‘which one of you ladies is single’ ROSADO to run out the game, having been drawn out of retirement at the age of 39 at the start of the season. Jean also supplemented a weakened Cockatoos ruck division with usual ruckman Babacar SALL (broken hand) currently out and his backup Wesley ‘Snipes’ DA SILVA unavailable. The massive efforts across the field allowed the Cockatoos to hold out and match the Antony Blues around the contest and on the scoreboard, slowly drawing away to eventually run out 35 point winners. Thoughts are with Antony Blue, and former Paris Cockerels premiership player, Brice BOURNAZEL, who suffered what appeared to be a serious knee injury with 1 minute remaining in the game which required an ambulance.

A great win in trying conditions which has seen the Cockatoos mathematically qualify for the finals series beginning in May in first place of the north division with a game still to play. Next up for the Toos is a derby against the Paris Cockerels on the 14th of May. For the Blues, the home and away season is now complete and they will await the derby result to see if they qualify for their first final’s series having marked the 2021/2022 season with their first win.

Antony Blues

  • 2.2.14
  • 3.4.22
  • 4.5.29
  • 5.9.39

Paris Cockatoos

  • 1.4.10
  • 6.9.45
  • 8.11.52
  • 10.14.74

Paris Cockerels vs Cergy-Pontoise Coyotes

Cocks: Maxence Launais (c), Pierre Boscart, Baudouin Germond, Julian Dagois, Stuart Saare, Jake Calvert, Mark Arnephy, Andrew Senkins, Yvan Barbaria, Clement Bouchet, Steven Ryan, Tristan Stanley, Huw Ryan, Thomas Hedley, François Daniel
A late ground change meant that there were some hectic last preparation to organise everyone and everything for the game. Once again a big thanks go out to the volunteers who continue to make these events happen. Without you guys it’s probably impossible and definitely only half as fun.
The grounds of Pershing had dried visibly since the last match with Bordeaux two weeks before. The weather conditions were hot and dry and would test the endurance and stamina of both teams.
The intent was there from the start for the Cocks with the midfield leading the way in on ball pressure. Dags running through the centre, drew a tackle before handballing to Calvert who was left clear to kick an early goal. Hedley was getting front and square to Boscart and making the best of some early opportunities. Boscart was plucking them out of the sky early with some great disposals by all into the attacking zone. Huw Ryan came in to the back line and showed some class defending with the Cergy loose man in our attack meaning that the ball rebounded often. Stanley was getting leather poisoning across the centre of the ground and was doing his bit to inspire the team with a text book tackle in front of the Cock cave awarding him a free kick at quarter time.
Some promising passages of play began to occur as the Cocks went coast to coast in convincing style. Senko could not mark a great defensive contest with a Cergy player but he was able to gather and hand ball to a front and square Bushy who kicked accurately to a leading Boscart. Another lovely kick from Huw found an open Dagois behind play. How he got open there was a magicians trick.
When Cergy got the ball they looked dangerous. They proved why they are playing finals with some impressive linking up by hands. But where there was a Cergy player with a ball there was Mark Arnephy who didn’t give them any room and was taking them down like a bird of prey. Fantastic on ball pressure from Mark who was setting the standard.
Gino was working like a man possessed with a great mark and run out of the backline supported by Senko in another defensive clearance.
The concentration dropped for a small passage in the 3rd with some quick goals to Cergy. The Cocks bounced back though with some inspiring stuff yet again from Dagois. This time a pick up and left foot kick into the attacking hot spot.
Tristo moved into the ruck as some bodies started to falter in the final term. He showed courage typifying the efforts of all players when he ran blind under the ball to spoil a defensive contest.
The skills seem to be really lifting as everyone goes forward. There were some really encouraging passages of play where we were composed and kicked to good targets. People are doing the team things and that’s why the score was what it was at the end of the day. Players continue to put their bodies on the line for their mates, a reason why we are inspired and love to play this game.


Coach Scallop