REPORT: Stourbridge 19 v 31 Ealing Trailfinders RFC

The Ealing Trailfinders travelled to Stourbridge in buoyant mood after their convincing victory at home the previous Saturday. Both sides began the game nervously with Ealing Trailfinders particularly error-prone in the early exchanges. Ealing Trailfinders managed to keep Stourbridge at bay with their defensive prowess. It was the powerful defence from Ealing Trailfinders that led to their first try. A Stourbridge handling mistake, primarily due to pressure being exerted by the Ealing Trailfinders defenders, allowed Ronnie McLean to break and off-load to a waiting Phil Chesters. As is so often the case with the in-form winger, he chipped and then gathered the ball to score. Ben Ward’s conversion gave Ealing Trailfinders a 7-0 lead after 17 minutes. Ealing Trailfinders extended their lead when Peter Hodgkinson managed to beat several defenders on his way to the try-line. Ward’s kick took the score to 14-0. Hodgkinson crossed for his second of the game after Owen Bruynseels initially intercepted the ball and enabled the visiting side to create the opportunity in the Stourbridge 22. Ward’s faultless kicking display made it 21-0 to an ever-impressing Ealing Trailfinders side. Ealing Trailfinders went into the half-time break the happier of the two teams after they defended their 21-0 lead admirably till the whistle blew for the interval.

 In the second half the Stourbridge side came out with a point to prove. They were camped in the Ealing Trailfinders half for large parts of the opening 10 minutes of the half. They took advantage of the numerical advantage of Jack Clifford’s sin-binning by opening their account through Captain Ben Hughes who sneaked over from close range. Ealing Trailfinders were almost instantaneously back on the score sheet when a definite candidate for try of the season earned the London side their bonus point. Hodgkinson gathered a long kick in his half which he chipped and gathered and then neatly cross-field kicked to Bruynseels who collected and ran in to score to leave the Stourbridge crowd applauding with appreciation. Ealing Trailfinders were leading 28-7 with half an hour remaining. Stourbridge staged a mini-comeback when tries from second row Rob Hurrell and Number 8 Adrian Hall reduced the score to 28-19. A Ward penalty saw Ealing Trailfinders register a comfortable 31-19 victory. This away victory further builds the momentum that the Ealing Trailfinders side are now gathering at an important stage of the season.

Jon Moyce (first team hooker) said “A game that required a 100% performance, we give it 80% of our best and came away with a win. Much to work on before we face Sedgely Park at home”

Ealing Trailfinders next game is at home at 3pm February 11th against Sedgely Park