Day 13 – Victory at the home of Rugby

After 12 days of anticipation, the wait was finally over. The game that has talked about at length over the whole tour was finally upon us. A dirty England side taking on the proud Wallabies. Mr Lever has been nervous since the English lost to an in form Wales team.

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But, before this once in a life time match at Twickenham Stadium, the boys were given time to explore the streets of London. Every boy on tour quickly ran towards one of the biggest sports stores in the world –  Lily Whites. Everyone had two and a half hours to explore London. After a full day of shopping everybody put their Wallabies shirts on, except for Mr Lever and Charlie Timpson, who dressed up in English colours.

We arrived at the home of rugby ready for an impressive game of footy. So, the game got underway and of course the Aussies scored first. 17-3 at half-time and things weren’t looking good for Mr Lever and Charlie who were very nervous. In the end Australia smashed the hosts by twenty points in one of the most exciting games of rugby any of us had ever seen. Go the Wallabies!!!

By Perry May

Day 12 – Kings & Queens & non-stop shopping

Today was Darcy Bouwman’s birthday.

We all said our goodbyes to our final billets as it was time to leave and head to London. All the boys had to write a small gift card to give to our billets to show our appreciation. Once we finished our fair wells we got on the bus and headed to London City. On the way there we stopped off in the village of Windsor where we saw Eton College and Windsor Castle, it was very interesting to see Eton as it is one of the most famous and posh schools in the world. People such as Bear Grylls, Prince Harry and Prince William went to school there when they were younger. Once we arrived in London, the tour guide got onto our bus and and it was time for a tour around all of the major tourist sights of London City. 

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 This afternoon we went to look around London on a special guided tour for about one and half hours. We saw Big Ben, we learnt that Big Ben is not actually the clock but rather the bell that is in the tower. We crossed  London Bridge then we headed off to Buckingham palace where the Queen struggles to make ends meet in her modest 12 room apartment.

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Then we learnt some of the history around the Tower of London and how it was the jail used to lock up people accused of treason. Once the tour had finished we all got settled into our hostel. The boys were really looking forward to being in London for the shopping.

That night we all went out for dinner to celebrate Darcy’s birthday at the Spaghetti House in Soho. Everyone really enjoyed the food and we had a birthday cake at the end and sang which really embarrassed Darcy who went bright red.

By Finn Walsh & Tom Ball

Day 11 – Harry Potter & the Grand Slam

Today the boys went to Oxford University after spending the first night with our billets. After arriving in Oxford we were given some free time to explore the area. As usual half went shopping and have went to eat.

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It was then off to Christ Church College for a guided tour. This tour showed the deep history of the college although many of the boys were more interested in the fact that the college was used to film part of the Harry potter movies. The guide explained what life was like in the times of King Henry VIII and Charles I and that it was where the story of Alice in Wonderland was conceived. Christ Church has also educated many former English Prime Ministers.

Many Oxford souveniers were bought and again food for the 20 minute trip back to Burford. The best were Tom Marchese’s 5 litre water bottle for a pound and Perry buying a Miami Florida hat.

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The last game of the Newington 2015 RWC Tour was against the Burford School no matter how good or bad this team was we knew we had to win to be one of the first Newington rugby tours to have a clear win sheet . Also being our last game of the tour we knew we had to give it our last big go , also being our last game of the 2015 season for rugby so we had to leave all our hard work on the field. Blood sweat and tears went into this tour so we had to give it our all and we worked too hard to not win all four games  . In the first minute of the game straight off the kick off Seb Danks, our tour captain scored the first try of the game with a strong performance running straight through the forward pack. Shortly after with good teamwork and communication Aiden fisher scored the second try of the game followed by a glorious try by Tom Ball stepping and running through the opposition . Aiden Fisher scored his second try of the game running straight down the wing , followed by another try from our skipper Seb running straight through the oppositions forward pack,  Harry Clarke playing a big role on the wing scoring a try down the wing making it 40 nil .

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Newingtons try streak was unfortunately ended by Burford scoring there first try out of two in the whole game, Tom Ball scored his second try in spectacular fashion shortly followed by James Douglas who worked his way into the try tally after spectacular work in the breakdown and in defense . With the score 50-7   Burford fought back to score there second and their final try of the game making the score 50-14 three more tries were scored by Newington after Burford, Ned who had a great match worked his way into the try scorers list with a spectacular whole field try , Aiden Fisher scored his third and final try of the game in spectacular fashion and Roach scored the final try of the game running through the whole Burford forward pack and worked his way around the back line once he made the break.  Kickers Perry and Ross had impeccable kicking it made several goals throughout the whole game . Although the large score margin Burford in certain stages of the match gave us a real run for our money, but being our last game through thick and thin we gritted our teeth and worked extra hard to win our final match of the tour and 2015 rugby season  we prepared for a tough match and we got nothing but a good result . Seb helped put our mind into the zone ready for a big match helping us to be positive and prepare for a tough game . All this hard work that was put into the tour and 2015 rugby season paid off helping us win all four of our games . Well done boys we worked hard and deserved it .

One of the Burford parents has taken a series of match photos for us. See the link below.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/rysf4wlljxlst16/AABy1VhjFCqo-d6D8otYQ5DBa?dl=0

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By Ned Stevens & Brennan Sortwell

Day 10 – Jousting, falconry and the Venice of the Cotswolds

Today we were leaving our families from Woodlands academy, once again a sad farewell to the kind families who took us into their homes. We left around 8:30am for Warwick Castle, one of the most famous castles in all of England. There were many different sights to see and everyone took plenty of photos. Some of these included Guy’s Tower which was the largest tower of the castle, the Gaol where the prisoners where kept and the Great Hall which was filled with weapons, artefacts and armour. There were lots of information panels so all the boys could learn about the castle’s history and the various owners of the castle over the hundreds of years of its existence. Before leaving the castle to the town for lunch we were fortunate enough to be able to see The Flight of the Eagles show which had many different trained birds of prey flying about the castle performing in a show. We learnt about how the birds were trained in the Middle Ages and the species of birds that they had trained at Warwick castle. Overall the boys had a great time looking about the castle despite it being a bit different to what we have done throughout the tour.

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After we finished our tour of Warwick castle we were allowed 2 hours in the town of Warwick to get lunch and explore the town. At this time a lot of the boys decided that they would spend a good 30 to 40 minutes in the Warwick Arms hotel just to get free wifi. After the 2 hours was over all of the boys and the teachers went back to the bus and got on and all drove down to Oxford. When we arrived in Oxford the time was only 3:23 and we would not be taken in by our new billets until 6 o’clock so we stopped at a park and some people including the teachers went off into the town whilst the rest stayed at the park playing touch football, NFL, WWE strictly with referees to ensure safety and finally chase Perry when he throws an apple at you. All the people from the town arrived back half an hour early to see what was going on and at 5:50 we got on the bus and went to the Burford school to meet our new billets. Once every body had gotten their new home for two nights there were four boys left.  When the mini bus pulled up in front of them they wondered where they were going and when they herd the words “boarding house” they were exited and intrigued by what awaited them.

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By James Roach & Jack Rathborne

Day 9 – Thinking, Bullfighting and Tackling

Today I woke up at 7 o’clock sharp, fixed myself some breakfast and then headed off to school with my billet. After being reunited with the rest of the Newington team, we headed off on an exciting trip to the Thinktank.

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When we arrived, we firstly visited the bottom level of the museum, which consisted of engines, energy and locomotive trains and transportation of goods. It was an interesting level which showed a lot of history and explained in depth how goods used to be transported- showing the difficulties the exporters faced.

The next place we visited was the Science Garden- probably the highlight of the museum. It was made up of many different hands on experiments and activities, such as a pulley which you had to pull your own weight up to climb, a water cannon, and a huge Rube Goldberg machine, showing the uses of different types of energy. After this, we then roamed around the rest of the museum, which was interesting. My favourite part was where they explained how different items were used to make cars.

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After this, we headed out to The Bullring- one of the biggest shopping centres in the UK. The highlight for all the boys was the discovery of the Nandos restaurant – a restaurant all of us boys are now familiar with. Others continued to shop and just look around. After this, we got back on the coach and drove to our game.

That afternoon the Newington side took on Woodlands Academy. It was a hard fought match for the boys which resulted in a 39-5 victory. There were 5 individual try scorers, with James Roach starring with three strong tries.

James opened the scoring off a kick from George bouncing into his hands running at full pace. The next try came from Riley off a good play by the backs with Riley scoring in the corner. Two more tries were scored by James before half time with Seb also scoring in the first half. Cameron converted 1/5, all being tough shots. Woodlands also scored one try, which was unconverted.

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The second half brought some fresh players on, who all wanted to make an impact. The half was hard fought up until the last 15 minutes when Newington made a break through with Justin running down the short side and getting past the fullback, off a great pass from Tom who was halfback. A few minutes later Harry scored a long range running try down the wing, sealing the game. Ross was able to convert 1/2 of the conversions.

Sione was voted man of the match by the other team.

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By Miles Parhash & Justin Raja

Newington win final tour game

The Newington boys have won their final tour match against Burford School. Played in fantastic conditions the boys rounded off their tour matches playing some great “Australian Running Rugby.”

The boys will be trekking around Windsor Castle and Eton College today before heading to the Natural History Museum for a 3 hour panoramic sightseeing tour of the capital. Sights will include the Tower of London and London Bridge, Buckingham Palace and the London Eye.

On Saturday the boys will be part of the amazing atmosphere as Australia play England at Twickenham, before departing for home on Sunday.

 

Day 8 – The Battle of Britain and off to Woodlands

After staying at the YHA NATIONAL FOREST HOSTEL, the boys and teachers packed their bags, had a quick bite to eat and left our accommodation. The boys were excited as they received the news that we would be taking each other on in a few games of Laser Tag. The boys geared up and got ready to destroy each other. The first game was free for all and the boys desperation to come first was noticable as everyone was sweating like a pig after running around in the battle zone. The winner of the first game was…… Myself. I was 300 points in front of Snowy Dorrell who has a broken leg. Well done Snowy!! After an intriguing first game the boys geared up for the second game as we split up into teams. After another match of laser tag, the boys waited outside to find out which team had won. The winner was Red. Actually we smashed blue by 2,000 points. Our very own Tom “the Destroyer” Lever joined in for the third match. It was teams once again and Mr Lever was relieved that I was joining the red team. The first five minutes I guarded Mr Lever with my life. It soon became apparent that he was holding his own, so I left him to fend for himself and went hunting the Blues. Once again the red team smashed the blue team. The fourth and the final game Mr Muir and Mr Manion joined in and Mr Lever jumped out. Everyone targeted the teachers in a free for all game. The overall winner was George Kosmos who got 3000 points. After this we thanked the people at laser quest and headed off for a bite to eat at the shopping mall in Coventry.

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After spending roughly an hour in the shopping centre, looking at many stores and places to buy things. We walked backed to our bus and we were now on our way to meet our second billets, who were again kind enough to open their homes to us. We all went off to do a variety of activities with our billets and with many boys still eager to make new friends we can see that this game against Woodland Academy will be a good challenge.

By Perry May & Jordan Mouscas

Day 7 – Summer Day in Villa Park

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Today, Sunday was quite a relaxed but fun day. First we woke up to James Roach trying to muzz (a sketchy dance). We then had a breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausage and black coffee (for Oscar Lynch) or as he called it ‘rocket fuel that could get you to Mars’. We then left at 9:15am to go to the home ground of the English Premier League team Aston Villa. We watched the Wallabies thrash Uruguay 64-3. We soaked in the amazing atmosphere of the roaring crowd.

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We then left for a 30 minute drive back to the hostel. The afternoon was made up of intense snooker games between Oscar and anyone who challenged his abilities as pool king, and a game of ‘touch’ rugby which ended up as a full on tackle match between forwards and backs. The backs obviously smashed the forwards. We than had a lie down before dinner. It was quiet as we were all mentally preparing or ‘geeing up’ for the the laser skirmish battle the next day. This blog was completely written by Tom Marchese as Oscar lynch had an energy crash after his 3 coffee a day diet.

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By Tom Marchese & Oscar Lynch

Day 6 – Long goodbyes and onto Oblivian

This morning was the last morning we would share with our Welsh billets after an amazing 3 days getting to know them. We all met up at the school and said our final goodbyes for a 9am bus ride to the Alton Towers theme park.

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The boys were then given a massive 5 hours to explore the park filled with rides, fast food and beverages. There were some great rides including the Oblivion which featured going extremely fast down a vertical slope. It took some coaxing but we finally got Perry and Finn to go on it and they loved it. Another great ride was the Sonic Spin ride, in this ride the passengers go through a blurry experience of speed and changing directions at rapid pace. The whole cage spins the whole time. We all had a great day and the whole bus ride to our new accommodation out near Derby was spent laughing at some of the wild faces that were pulled during all the rides.

Once we got to the YHA National Forest we were assigned to our rooms. Everyone is getting to spend lots of time with different people and we are all getting along really well together. After dinner we all gathered around the telly to watch the England V Wales game with Mr Lever obviously going for England and everyone else cheering madly for Wales. The boys then set up camp for a good nights rest.

By Max Lowry & Sione Lemoto