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NLA
Sun 24.09.17, 14:00 h | Allmend Brunau, Zürich

29 : 23

First Team wins season opener against Geneva PLO

After a long summer break everybody was excited to put into practice what had been learned over the past year and eager to show the head coach that we’re not a bunch of knob heads but decent rugby players. The first game of the season wasn’t going to be an easy one by any means – GEPLO only lost two games last season. 
However the Zurich lads started with a good defense against an aggressive side from Geneva. Unfortunately they weren’t able to withstand the pressure and conceded a first try after only a couple of minutes. The response came quickly though, not only in the form of tries but in general play. After a phase of control Zurich managed to get into the game with a magnificent kick from Uruguayan Pachi and a powerful catch by Suisse A-Player Ivan who scored Zurich’s first - well deserved - try. Suisse A team mate Hugh made the conversion look easy: 7-5.

A fairly even game followed with no side having a clear advantage. Next to score were the visitors - their strong fly-half saw a gap in Zurich’s otherwise well organised defensive line and scored. As earlier, the hosts didn’t seem to be taken aback, andcontinued putting pressure on the away team which was only possible due to the hard work put in by the forwards on the breakdowns and in general. It paid off when Sylvain, who was having a great game, broke through the line and handed a lovely offload to Zurich’s scrum-half who only had to draw his man and pass for Pachi to finish off right at the corner. PLO then did their best to catch up but only managed to slot in a dull penalty. They slowly began to lose their nerve and  when at some point GC was on Geneva’s 5m lineour old acquaintance Kenji lost it and took out his frustration on muscle boy and newly-converted hooker Andri. That meant a 10 minutes break for hit man Sylvain whose mission for the day wasmuzzling Geneva’s big number 8. Despite the tumult Zurich stayed composed and was in the mood to score another try - this time Tim decided to have a go and succeeded with some fancy fending off inplacing the ball right between the posts. Shortly after that it was half time. Score 19:13 for Zurich!

The second half began and in contrast to Zurich, the “almost-French” got a bit nervous and one lost his temper yet againwhich led him receiving a yellow due to a late and high tackle. Somehow they seemed to recover a bit and scored another try after Hugh slotted a penalty making the new score 22:20. A special mention to the kicker, as it seems not only his feet but also his lanky arms are very useful for charging down their conversion and thus preventing Geneva from equalising.

The final phase showed wonderful teamwork from Zurich, proving their ability to deal with pressure and even scoring the final try of the game. Even if Pachi went for a grande finale by drop kicking but missing it all came to a positive end. Italian Ale snatched Geneva’s last line-out, passing the ball to Flo who for some reason didn’t want to finish the game himself and delegated the task of booting the ball into touch to Yannick.

The game was a great success for Zurich and is a massive motivational boost for the new season.

Lineup

1 Norman Pedrini, 2 Andri Koeferli, 3 Sämi König, 4 Felix von Reischach, 5 Chris Röhrig, 6 Sylvain Coutu, 7 Tim Vögtli, 8 Yannick Liechti (C), 9 Oli Dias, 10 Fin Small, 11 Romain Kooger, 12 Yannick Staubli, 13 Matias "Pachi" Arocena, 14 Ivan Kraljevic, 15 Hugh Kisielewski

Reserves

16 Simon Wood, 17 Chris Gut, 18 Dominik Kern, 19 Ale Gambarotta, 20 Phil Schüepp, 21 Germain Brunet, 22 Flo Bezard, 23 Louis Reyes

Tries 

Kraljevic (2x), Arocena, Vögtli

Penalties 

Kisielewski

Conversions 

Kisielewski (2x)

Man of the match

Coutu

(Von: Oli Dias)