Five Must-Watch Plays from Arrows v. Free Jacks
The Toronto Arrows produced another valiant display in their final game of the 2021 season. Toronto was up against it from the off against a surging Free Jacks but, despite a late push, the Arrows lost 28-17 to New England.
As he so often has this season, Tomas De La Vega provided a spark in the 61st minute to bring the Arrows back in contention. Then came the pressure and quick-thinking offence that has typified this season for Toronto. Another try and two conversions personified this team’s never-say-die attitude.
It has been a rollercoaster of a season for Canada’s sole representative in Major League Rugby, having spent the best part of the last five months away from home.
While the distance may have been tough, it never showed in the performances the Arrows produced week in, week out. Every game was a show of grit, determination and some excellent rugby. All of that is on show in this week’s Five-Must Watch Plays, with eye-catching moments on both sides of the ball.
Amazing Last-Ditch Try-Saving Tackle
This clip combines a really fantastic piece of individual skill and immense work-rate from the entire back line, all in pursuit of a try-saving tackle. Have a watch (and then pick your chin up from the ground)…
Oh So Nearly
The following clip is the perfect example of just how dangerous this Arrows offence can be in broken play. Much has been made of how good Toronto is from the set piece, but the team’s ability to change the point of attack is something to marvel.
Coming from a clearance kick and under pressure, Manuel Montero and the Arrows engineer a gain of 40 metres just like that. Unfortunately this one wouldn’t result in a score, but this style of rugby is electric!
Great Ball Movement Results in Near-Try
If the above clip showcases the Arrows’ ability to create from broken play, this one highlights Toronto’s ability to convert half-chances into genuine try-scoring opportunities.
From the ruck, the Arrows get quick ball but are confronted with a fast line from the Free Jacks. This entire opportunity comes from a miss pass by Sam Malcom and then an incredible pass (about five seconds in) by Joaquin Tuculet. Blink and you’ll miss it.
de la Vega Is EVERYWHERE
This clip starts with the Arrows down by 25 points. In most scenarios a team down by that much would just look to keep the scoreboard respectable; they would do anything to try and keep the opposing team from going over again. Not this Arrows team.
A dominant line-out sets the Arrows up for a push towards the line, but it almost goes astray as the ball moves wide. Then comes the man of the moment, Tomas de la Vega. Watch the clip below closely and you’ll see he makes an initial break from the ruck and produce a sublime offload to keep the play going. Then who else would pick up from the back of the next ruck and muscle his way over…
These Arrows just don’t quit.
Montero and Tuculet Combine Wonderfully
Every time the Arrows play you just know there is going to be a moment of offensive magic. Well folks, here it is for today. You could just sit and watch two excellent talents create something out of nothing.
However, upon further inspection this is a fantastic, heads-up rugby play. The Free Jacks commit the penalty and Manuel Montero sees an opening with New England yet to drop back the required 10 metres. Surging through the gap, it appears as if he will be isolated only for Joaquin Tuculet to pull the supporting run. Montero takes the hit to make the play and the Arrows fight back once again.
Although it didn’t end with a win, the Toronto Arrows finished their season with their heads held high. In a season of mixed results and nail-biting finishes, Toronto didn’t always get the bounces to fall their way. It didn’t stop this team from fighting until the final whistle. For now, there is a well-deserved break on the cards.
About the Author:
Oliver Smith is writer, podcast host and sports fanatic. Growing up in London, England, he moved to Toronto in 2010 before graduating with Honours at Queen’s University. He has been a sports writer since 2019. Reach him on Twitter or LinkedIn.
Header Photo Credit: Ben Weitz
The Toronto Arrows Rugby Football Club would like to thank Prime Minister
The Toronto Arrows produced another valiant display in their final game of
The Toronto Arrows' comeback bid against New England came up short
For Immediate Release MARIETTA, GA - Toronto Arrows Director of Rugby Chris
With files from Rugby Canada Five Arrows have been selected to start for