Sandown & Shanklin 2nd XV Record Commanding Victory Over Trojans 3rd XV
The Sandown & Shanklin RFC 2nd XV welcome Trojans RFC 3rd XV to the Fairway. The Hurricanes were bolstered by returning players following a brilliant mini-run of four victories on the trot.
The first try of the game came relatively early after the home side moved possession into the middle of the park from kick off. The ball was taken into contact by the forwards and then quickly out the ruck by the scrumhalf, out to Jack Sothcott at 10 who popped to his inside centre Josh Wetherick. Wetherick shimmied and shook his way through three tackles before entering the opposition 22 and stepping inside the fullback to score. Fantastic support outside him from his centre partner Tom Borrercommentating his proximity to Wetherick the whole way down the field. The conversion was added by 2nd XV regular kicker Mitch Farrant, 7 – 0. The restart was close to the ten-metre line and allowed Trojans to get close to the receiver, and resulted in possession being turned over, following strong play from the Trojans pack. The consecutive line-out was disrupted well however by Farrant, and the loose ball was picked up by Dan Sayers, who drove into the visitor’s defensive line and shrugging off a couple half-hearted tackles. Some quick feet and a change of direction saw Sayers blitzing down the touchline and passing the fullback to dot down. Farrant slotted the conversion, to extend the Hurricanes lead, 14 – 0.
The visitors looked to play for some territory in the Hurricanes half and a well-placed kick was allowed to bounce out of play. The resulting line out was messy and had to be tidied up by captain Liam Little. Despite this period of sustained pressure from Trojans and score of their own, 14 – 5, it seemed to ignite Sandown & Shanklin as they went straight up the other end and scored. Sothcott again pulling the strings at fly-half, finding his forwards with good passes, and then reversed a pass on the inside to onrushing winger Brandon Anderton who showed good strength to burst through the line and score, 21 – 5. As the visitors began to slow down and tire, this was capitalised on by, Number 8, Connor King. The young back-rower, cut a fantastically incisive line off the Sothcott to glide through the defensive line unscathed. At half time this put the scores at 28 – 5.
The second half started in similar fashion to the first, this time with Josh Sayers, collecting the ball from the restart and sprinting down the touchline and into the visitors 22, where he was then dragged into touch. The hosts, however, managed to steal back possession and quickly shipped the ball Sothcott, who made a smart break fending off two defenders and then blasting through the opposition fullback to dot down cross for his first of the game, 33 – 5.
Another flurry of tries followed, with Zac Davis getting in on the act, after great work upfront with good clearing out from backs and forwards alike 38 – 5. Shortly after it was the turn of the other forward to score, Josh Sayers, another run down the blindside from halfway, handing off defenders and managing to score in the corner. The kick was close but just missed, 43 – 5. After this spell, there were some injuries and this marked a lull in a game where the Trojans brought on their oldest player at 63 to go in the front row, as they were now uncontested.
They used the set-piece cleverly to put themselves within five metres of the try line, but ten phases later were still on the dotted line. Splendid defending from Danny Thomas, Jon Miselbach, George Law and Jack Winter sent the visitors into a retreat. However, several phases later the visitors soon scored. In unusual fashion, the 63-year-old prop, playing his final game, took the conversion underneath the posts, and converting! The score now 43 – 12.
Charles Little then added a score for himself, followed by scores from Matty Cripps on at wing and Michael Cooper, returning after over a year out. Unfortunately all the conversion were missed, but the hurricanes were looking very comfortable against a tiring side, 58 – 12. Tom Borrer then followed up with a try of his own, off the back of another slippery run from Wetherick who popped inside to Borrer to dive over and score, 65 – 12. The final score of the game came from Man of the Match Jack Sothcott, when Sothcott ran an inventive line between two defenders and then used his powerful hand-off to down the prop. Farrant converting the conversion to cap off, a well deserved victory and sets the 2nd XV up nicely for the club day away to Tottonians next week. 72 – 12 at the final score.
The 2nd XV return to action next weekend (23rd February), when they travel to Tottonians RFC to play their 3rd XV in a re-arranged fixture.