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GET YOUR TICKET FOR THE SONICS PRESENTATION NIGHT

The Bristol Sonics 2011 Presentation Night will take place on 17th September at Tiki Cocktail Bar and Grill (44 Whiteladies Road) from 19:30.

The night will be a celebration of everything the club has acheived this year so awards will be presented to players and volunteers from the 1st and 2nd teams, SubSonics Touch Rugby teams, and the club’s junior set-up.

Tickets are just

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SONICS UNABLE TO TAME LIONS

Accrington and Leyland Lions won a feisty but compelling encounter 28-16 over Bristol Sonics to progress to the semi-finals of the Harry Jepson Trophy.A frenetic opening saw plenty of action at both ends but amazingly produced no tries. It wasn’t until 10 minutes that Accrington opened the scoring through Tom Lever who was able to ground the ball as the Sonics failed to deal with a high kick. Mark Quinn converted to extend the lead. With the Lions on top it was a surprise when on 16 minutes the Sonics drew level in a mirror image of the Lions score! A high bomb again not being dealt which gave Marcus Brooker the easiest of scores, Dom Swann adding the extras. Within minutes the Sonics were in front as Brooker broke the line on half way and danced through the cover defence for a cracking score. Swann added the extras to give the Sonics an unlikely 12-6 lead.What followed was almost 20 minutes of incessant Accrington pressure with the Sonics’ defence hanging on manfully. In a portent of what was to follow, numerous penalties were conceded by Bristol with second row Jack Gibson warned over his tackling style.. The pressure had to tell and finally on 38 minutes Dan Horridge went over in the corner as a passing move created an overlap out wide. The conversion was missed and the Sonics entered the break with a slender 2 point advantage.Sonics’ coach Karl Fearnley’s half-time team talk was quickly out of the window as within a minute of the restart the Sonics failed to deal with a sixth-tackle offload and the loose ball was picked up by Andrew Robinson to go over and put Accrington back in front. This seemed to act as a wakeup call to the Sonics and a period of pressure ensued with Accrington’s defence holding firm.Controversy flared on 57 minutes when Sonics winger Mike Norman broke the cover only to be taken off his feet by a high covering tackle from the Accrington full-back. Norman had already been caught high in the second half

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SONICS WARY OF LIONS’ BITE

Bristol Sonics take a trip into the unknown on Sunday when they face Cooperative RLC North West Premier Champions Accrington & Leyland Lions in the quarter final of the nation-wide Harry Jepson Trophy.Having overcome regional rivals Leicester Storm 28-20 in last Saturday’s RLC Midlands Premier Final, the Sonics have now set their sights on lifting the prestigious Harry Jepson Trophy

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SUPPORTERS URGED TO GET ON BOARD WITH THE SONICS THIS SUNDAY

Bristol Sonics will be laying on a 49 seater coach for their national quarter-final clash in Birmingham on Sunday and supporters are urged to book their place early to avoid disappointment.Having won the Midlands Premier title last Saturday the Sonics now enter the quarter finals of the nation-wide Harry Jepson Trophy, the knock-out cup competition for the winners of each of the Rugby League Conference’s eight Premier divisions. They now face a quarter final clash with Accrington and Leyland Lions, the winners of the North West Premier, in Birmingham on Sunday 21 August.Supporters wishing to travel with the Sonics are asked to be at Aretians RFC for 11am on Sunday. The coach will cost

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SKIPPER SWANN INSPIRES SONICS GRAND FINAL TRIUMPH

A virtuoso performance from captain Dom Swann helped Bristol Sonics edge out Leicester Storm 28-20 to claim their first ever Cooperative Rugby League Conference Midlands Premier title. Swann was in the thick of the action all afternoon, scoring two tries and setting up four others to lead his charges to their first Grand Final win since 2007. Bristol’s record points scorer – the most capped player in the club’s history – also kicked two crucial conversions to help ensure a relatively comfortable margin of victory.But it was far from the easy win that many had predicted. From start to finish Leicester proved more than worthy opponents, and had it not been for the brilliance of Bristol’s key playmakers and tireless forwards the result could have been very different. Although the Sonics led from start to finish, there were times when Leicester appeared to be getting on top. But every time Leicester posed a question, the Sonics – and Swann in particular – had an answer.Playing in their second RLC Midlands Premier Grand Final following last year’s agonizing golden point loss to Coventry Bears, Bristol started well and enjoyed first use of the ball thanks to a Leicester error straight from the kick-off. Storm captain Max Oxton-Morris allowed the ball to bounce into touch metres from the Storm line, giving Bristol an opportunity to test Leicester’s line defence. The Sonics almost took advantage, but Tom James’ pass was spilled by winger Andrew Bond with the line begging.Bristol were then rocked by an early injury setback, with influential full-back James Gross forced off with a nasty mouth injury. Gross caught a stray elbow in the face and had to make a trip to Southmead Hospital to get stitches. He returned just in time to join his teammates at the post-match presentations. His place in the backline was taken by substitute Dan Evans, who went on to produce one of his best performances in a Sonics shirt. He was a more than adequate replacement for the man who had scored 12 tries in his previous three appearances.Despite the loss of Gross, Bristol continued to impress and soon crossed the whitewash for the first time. With nine minutes on the clock a break by hardworking second-rower Josh Sampson set up the position for scrum half Tom James to skip through the line and touch down under the posts for his first try since early June. Swann converted to give the home side a deserved 6-0 lead.Although Leicester were defending stoutly, they found it hard to breakdown Bristol’s rugged defence despite an expansive game plan that saw centre Greg Hurst and scrum half Callum Corley in the thick of the action. Bristol settled down and played the percentages, completing sets and waiting for their next opportunity to attack the Leicester line. That chance came on 16 minutes. Skipper Swann produced a piece of magic to unpick Storm’s solid defensive line and waltz his way to the line, touching down wide on the right. He missed the tricky conversion, but the Sonics had a handy 10-0 lead.Leicester were soon handed an opportunity to hit back, though. Following a couple of penalties and strong running from Hurst, player/coach Ty Watson and England Lionhearts prop Demetrius Gonsalves, Storm suddenly found themselves deep in Bristol territory. Hooker Simon Anniss took advantage, as he often does in games against the Sonics, squeezing his way over from close range to reduce the arrears. Gregg Harris’s conversion attempt barely left the floor, but suddenly Storm had a foothold in the game.The visitors began to play with renewed confidence and soon started to get a roll on via quick play-the-balls and rugged tackling. Bristol continued to compete well but found it hard to pierce Leicester’s well organized defence.Eventually the pressure told, with Storm centre Greg Hurst crossing over in the left corner after good hands from Anniss and scrum half Callum Corley. Although Harris again missed the conversion, Bristol held only a slender 10-8 lead with 32 minutes gone.The Sonics quickly hit back with Wes Rodgers, Wayne Cochran and hooker Harry Marson making good ywards. A half break from Dom Swann and a lightening-quick play-the-ball set up the position for Jack Gibson to attack the line wide on the left. While referee David Butler adjudged that Gibson had been halted inches short, Swann scooped up the ball and dived over unopposed to record his second try of the afternoon. A brilliant touchline conversion from the veteran skipper meant Bristol went into the break 16-8 ahead.Bristol took little time in extending their lead when play restarted for the second period. With less than a minute gone, a beautiful pass from Swann released Dan Evans on the right. He weaved his way in and out of the Storm defence, surging away from 40 metres out to record the try of the game. It was a moment of brilliance from Evans, who returned the ball admirably all afternoon.Suddenly, Bristol had found their form and looked like the better of the two sides. A period of pressure deep in Leicester territory followed, with Johan Schoeman, Marcus Brooker and Josh Sampson all going close.On 47 minutes Leicester were reduced to 12 men when second-rower Liam Barnes was sent to the sin-bin for pulling down a Bristol forward during a scrum. The Sonics used their man advantage to batter the Leicester line, but dropped balls and poor passes cost them a chance to cross the whitewash. Wes Rodgers

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SONICS A TAKE ON LOCAL RIVALS BUT 1ST TEAM GAME IS CANCELLED

Bristol Sonics’ final Midlands Qualifying game away to Leamington Royals has been cancelled as the hosts have not been able to raise a team this weekend. So attention is focused on the Sonics’ A Team as they take on local rivals Swindon St George.Unfortunately a replacement game has not be found for the 1st team so they will take a weekend off. The result wouldn’t have had any bearing on the league positions as the Sonics secured top place in the Midlands Qualifying West division with last weekend’s impressive victory over Telford Raiders. That has set up a showdown with bitter rivals Northampton Demons in the first week of the Midlands Premier play-off campaign on July 16.Head Coach Karl Fearnley was in contemplative mood following the news: ‘It’s disappointing we don’t have a fixture as this weekend would have been the last chance for us to fine tune our performance ahead of the Premier play-offs, which will test us to the full. In many ways we’ve become victims of our own success as not all sides in the division are up to our standards which has led to cancellations. But we know there will be no more easy games this season with the premier play-offs starting next week. We need to start fulfilling our potential and bring some consistency to our game for the remainder of the season. If we do that we should have a good chance of making a second Midlands Premier Grand Final.”Bristol Sonics’ A travel to Swindon St George where a win would go a long way to securing their place in the top 3 and the end-of-season playoffs. The Sonics second team narrowly lost out 28-32 to Swindon in their first ever RLC match back in May. On that occasion the Sonics out-scored their opponents seven tries to six, but were made to rue seven missed conversion attempts.But the Sonics have improved week-on-week and slowly climbed up the RLC West of England table into 3rd place, 3 points ahead of this weekend’s rivals. Coach Aran Simm is expecting a big performance from his team: ‘The guys need no motivation for this game – we’ve got our sights set-on a top-three finish and a lot of the players are still smarting from that opening day defeat to Swindon . We had a lot of players making their RL debut on that day but they’ve gained in experience during the season and have been playing some good rugby in recent weeks.’