Ealing Trailfinders continued their rise up the National 2 table and secured third spot with a brutal and hard-fought away win at Bristol’s Dings Crusaders.
Ben Ward was at his magnificent best with the boot, kicking faultlessly to rack up 19 of Ealing’s 29 points.
Ben Ward scores 19 points
Ben Ward added " We were very pleased to go away from home to a place where we have never won and come away with the victory. We were disrupted by injuries in the week and the result shows our strength in the squad".
Dings are a tough side to beat, their pack is aggressive and competitive, and with their vocal local support urging them on they never gave up the fight.
It was Ealing who scored first through flanker Blair Morris, with Ward converting his first points of the afternoon, but Dings struck back through their fast backs, Watkins and Stott, with fullback Stott touching down to square the scores at seven-all.
Blair Morris powers over for Ealing’s opening try
Ealing now stepped up the pace and Dings discipline let them down with two penalties conceded before half time. Then another penalty, which Ward kicked perfectly to five metres out, set up an attacking lineout for the visitors.
A clean take and drive saw the ball driven over, but tantalisingly held up. From the resulting scrum Ealing No8 Guthrie Hall picked up and swiftly touched down near the posts. Dings went in trailing 7 to 20 and it was inevitable they would come out hard in the second half, and sure enough they did.
Dings drove to 5 metres out as soon as the half kicked off, and patiently worked the ball until they were able to dive over for a converted try.
But Dings weren’t able to capitalise on their early pressure, and Ealing once more got on the front foot. The home side continued to infringe and allowed Ward to ease Ealing into a winning position, first with a penalty, and then a drop-goal-to-nothing when the referee was indicating Dings had transgressed yet again.
A late Dings try was only a consolation, with Ward finishing the afternoon with a final penalty.
Director of Rugby Mike Cudmore whilst pleased with the teams win said:
“We were all pleased with the result on Saturday against Dings. It is a very tough place to get anything and this was the first time we have got a win there since I have been at the club. The team played with belief and enthusiasm throughout and never stopped working. It was never going to be a rugby spectacle but this season is about going away from home and putting in performances that challenge the home team and if all goes well generate points at the end of the game.”
Ealing return to Vallis Way to take on Shelford on Saturday 17th October, kick off 3pm.