Ealing Trailfinders produced a polished seven try performance to beat Lydney at Regentsholm on Saturday. Despite this result the much sought after play off spot slipped from their hands as Rosslyn Park overcame Canterbury to take second position.
As Ealing’s fly half Ben Ward said, "whatever Rosslyn Park did they would continue to play their own brand of attacking entertaining rugby. "We knewwe could have an effect on the outcome of our game and could not effect what Rosslyn Park did. We had really put an emphasis on playing our style of rugby and imposing ourselves on the game. It can be easy at this stage of the season to relax a little bit but we turned up with the right attitude and were able to put some good rugby together testing Lydney in the tight with our power runners and also out wide. After what happened at Lydney last season we wanted to show how far we have come as a side and I think we did that."
This attitude was reflected from the first whistle. Lydney did take the game to their West London opponents, but it was Ealing’s supporters player of the season Pete Hodgkinson who opened the scoring on 10 minutes stepped his way through the Lydney defence to score out wide. From the kick off, Lydney, kicked away possession and two minutes later Ealing’s lively hooker Jon Moyce powered his way through for the days second try. Scrum half Morgan Thompson kicked the extra 2 pints.
Ealing were at this stage moving the ball with great speed and skill, they looked to run the ball at every opportunity, and on twenty minutes ,wing Owen Bruynseels crossed the line for his 16th try of the season. Thompson added the conversion.
Lydney’s own danger man, wing Charlie Vine scored a fine individual try on 22 minutes to claw five points back for the hosts. Lydney’s fly half Martin Knight kicked a penalty on 40 minutes to take the score to 8-19 at half time.
Ealing hit the ground running in the second half. Their strong defence turned the ball over in midfield and on 42 minutes , Blaire Morris went over, Thompson added the extras. The second half was one way traffic, Lydney having no answer to their opponents fitness and speed of thought. Tries came at regular intervals. Second row Ryan Gregory crossed on 53 minutes, followed by the leagues top try scorer, Phil Chesters on 60 minutes for his 27th of the season.
Two tries came in quick succession, as firstly wing Richard Briggs scored followed by number 8 Guthrie Hall who capped an impressive display and bought up the half century of points.
Skipper Jay King said after the game, "It was a great win down at Lydney, last year we went down there and suffered a defeat with similar circumstances surrounding the match. We controlled possession from the start, and there was great linking between the backs and the forwards. We defended very well. It was great away win. Not many teams will go down to Lydney and score 50 points. "
Ealing Director of Rugby , Mike Cudmore was happy with the performance, he said, "We knew what we needed to achieve and that was a five point win. We played well and delivered a very good away performance. There were some very good individual performances and we need to build on this and take it into our last game at home this week against Westcombe Park"
This weekend, Ealing return to Vallis Way, for their rearranged final National 2 South league match against Westcombe Park. Kick off is 3pm. Hooker Jon Moyce, commented about the last game of the season , he said "Westcombe Park will be a physical battle with the forwards. Their style of play requires strong defensive systems around the breakdown. We will be looking to finish on a high, and with five points set in the mind."
Ealing Trailfinders team
15 – Hodgkinson ,14 – Chesters, 13 – Burcham , 12 – Price ,11 – Bruynseels, 10 – Ward, 9 – Thompson, 8 – Hall, 7 – King (C), 6 – Morris, 5 – Davies, 4 – Gregory, 3 – Alexopoulos, 2 – Moyce, 1 – Kuwana
16 – Buchanan, 17 – Neville 18 – Winterbottom, 19 – Essien, 20 – Briggs
Ealing number 8 Guthrie Halls takes on the Lydney back row
Second row Gethin Davies secures possession