Evergreens off to a winning start to the season again. Captain Declan Cronin reports.
Evergreens off to a winning start to the season again but it was a rather facile win to be honest. Southgate showed up with 11 players so we gave them three (and thanks very much to all who agreed to help them out) which became five in the second half! Scrums went uncontested at the second attempt as their hooker managed to stand on the tighthead’s Achilles and put him out of the game! Pity, because we would definitely have dominated there.
The first half was basically all Evergreens with yours truly flopping over the line from all of six inches for the opening score after a series of good forward drives. Then a good clean line-out saw the ball spread wide and a lovely miss move in the centres had Eoghan O’Sullivan going under the posts without a hand laid on him. I found myself loitering among the backs and got on the end of a nice flowing move to score a second time. Big Jonny Harrison finished the first half scoring with a barn-storming run through their defence with their scrum-half clinging on limpet-like to his 22-stone frame! Inevitably there was a little easing off in the second half which was not good with a a big game coming up and we were all guilty of lack of concentration at times or wrong options… speaking of which, one of the most glaring was where I ignored the big Scouse lad screaming for the ball on my inside and decided to take on half the Southgate defence on my own. Unsurprisingly I was held up over the line but from the ensuing scrum Ricky attacked the blind side and, cool as a cucumber, placed the ball down just on the line.
We must have started to feel sorry for them then because when they kicked long to find Stef Glancy on the wing (yes, Stef played on the wing) he caught it nicely and then chucked it at Steve Weekes at full-back. Just in case Weekesy might gather the ball and clear it, Stef then ran into him and took him out. Southgate gathered the ball and should have scored but were called back for a forward pass. I felt so sorry for them that a few minutes later I went on a run and with acres of open space around me, looked desperately around me for someone to pass to and promptly slipped a neat inside pass to their scrum-half who took off and scored their only try. Not sure they even thanked me properly for that. John Ronane finished off our scoring when again we showed great hands and support play with the ball going wide to Stef on the wing then back inside for Johnny to score. Alex Gillespie added three conversions.
That was pretty much the story of the scoring but there were some other memorable sights… Scouse winding himself when trying to high tackle their second row, Stef sprinting along the touchline like a car being push-started with everyone wondering when the gears would kick in! The innocent face of John Ronane when their flanker was penalised for pushing him off the ball, wonder why he did that, eh, John? and Terry running out of bounds to stop the clock: oops, wrong game!
Good effort in the first half by everyone, just a shame that we didn’t maintain the focus through the second half but the defence was good throughout with John Ronane and Andy Lee smothering everything in sight. Big Phil the Bill Harvey made a welcome return to Ealing colours as did Declan "not Cronin" McGrath. Thanks to the Exiles (Alastair, Alex and Malik) who helped us fill the numbers especially for Southgate. Here’s to the rest of the season!
|Ealing Evergreens 36||Southgate II 7|
|Tries:||Cronin (2), Harrison, O’Sullivan, Spadavecchia, Ronane||Tries:||(1)|