Ealing Trailfinders Academy v Army U23 won 25-14
Our annual fixture against the Army is always an exciting week for all involved in the Academy, following a strong performance against London Scottish there was a good feeling in the build to today’s fixture. This was in stark contrast to last season when injuries had taken its toll on a young squad.
The army Stadium at Aldershot offers a nice wide pitch and a great surface, the Autumn sunshine certainly brought out the best in both sides, the early encounters were hard and very quick, Ealing made much of the running, putting together some good phases, strong Army defence meant a solitary penalty by Yun Shun Luk was all we had to show for our efforts.
Strong scrummaging, evident in our last match, was again an area of dominance for the young Trailfinders, some very strong running by U18 lock Lewis Ellingham and flanker Tyler Bush meant the Army had to be at their very best to stay in touch, the first half finished two penalties a piece at 6-6
The second half started well for Ealing with a great chase at the restart and a charge down, gather and 20m run in by Bush, converted from wide out by Luk. A lapse in concentration from the restart put pressure on ourselves and another breakdown penalty allowed the team in red to narrow the lead. There was a stark contrast between our attacking and defensive restarts and will certainly be an area for some work over the coming weeks.
The tempo of the game remained high, a credit to both young sides and great advert for development rugby, new Academy member Ellis McCausland-Swan, returning to the club after a period with the London Broncos RL Academy, made some telling carries, hit some lovely angles and made good yards, his partnership with outside centre Chris Hitchcock looks promising. It was Chris Hitchcock who scored next, this time combining with Danny Higgins to ghost through the Army defensive line and score under the sticks, giving Luk a simple conversion.
Ealing were in good form and lost little shape despite ringing the changes, and skipper Marcus Lowe scored next with a powerful blind side run for the line.
Fatigue told for the final score, this time to the Army with the Ealing defence running out of steam and bodies to allow a try wide on our left.
All told, a great day for all involved, a wonderful opportunity to connect with our Armed Services and show our support for all they do.
Congratulations on Academy debuts for McCausland-Swan and prop Max Young, next up are Brunel University in two weeks under lights, can’t wait!!!
See you at training…..
Ealing Trailfinders Academy
Steadman L, Fessal, Hitchcock C, McCausland-Swan, Walker, Luk, Hacohen, Lowe ©, Avis O, Bush, Ellingham, Wake, Chamnaoui, Joyce, Nikolatos
Hitchcock T, Young, Vosabalavu, March, Leonard-Fox, Steadman J, Higgins D, Hissey, Adeleke
Tries – Bush, Hitchcock C, Lowe
Cons – Luk 2
Pens – Luk 2